Hiding in Plain Sight
You might recall a post I sent out a couple of weeks ago about our quest to find a Ross’s Goose on the lakefront of Chicago on a cold December morning. As a postscript to the piece I showed a shot of bird photographers laying on the ice and snow in order to get better pictures of the goose.
Shortly after that I was looking at some ground-level pictures taken by BurningNaturePhotography (BNP) which were posted on GreatBirdPics. Within the Description he wrote about getting the shot of a Common Goldeneye and he stated, “I usually lay on the ground with a Camo [camouflage]net over my head and body waiting for ducks to slowly swim by. This duck had no idea I was there until it heard the click of my shutter.” His description intrigued me so I asked him to send me more information about his setup. He said, “[At Skokie Lagoons] it’s a short walk, along the waters edge to spots close to the water, I lay on my yoga mat with a camo throw over my body. I get there early and set up before the ducks fly in. Usually there for about 3-5 hours. Sometimes I get some shots most times nothing. The pic I sent with this is me in my newest hide.” Here’s his hide – look for the end of his camera sticking out the left side, pointing left.
The yoga mat is a good idea as it would insulate his body from the ground, but can you imagine staying like that for 3-5 hours? Decidedly Dedicated! Here are a few of his shots from his hide, starting with the Goldeneye that first caught my attention.
Below is a male Hooded Merganser floating by. Great lighting on the bird and showing a bit of reflection.
I really like this picture of a Northern Shoveler with the surge of blue water behind it, appearing to push him along.
Finally, a colorful picture of a Blue-winged Teal rearing up. When at rest the blue wing feathers are often hidden but this picture shows them off well (also seen when flying).
Thanks BNP for the information you provided on how you got those great ground-level shots – and stay warm!
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