Breeding Bird Surveys (2013) – Day 4

Breeding Bird Surveys (2013) – Day 4 – June 6, 2013


Today’s route was a two-part route with the approximate half-way point being the small town of White River, Ontario (Winnie-the-Pooh town). The first half of the route was new to us so we had scouted out the route the night before and found that the gravel road was in good condition with no washouts, a great improvement over the gravel road conditions of the survey route of the day before. As we arrived at the starting point for today’s survey, the mist hung heavy over the silent waters of the lakes, ponds and valleys along the route. Soon after our survey began, the rising sun began to paint the sky in a broad assortment of colours and, with each turn in the road, the sky changed the show for the beginning of a new day. Continue reading

Maplelawn Garden, 529 Richmond Road, Ottawa

Maplelawn garden is an approximately 1 acre site adjacent to Richmond Road at Broadview. (Location) It is a National Capital Commission property maintained by a volunteer group, the Friends of the Maplelawn Garden. The garden is a walled garden dating from the 1830’s when the property and the gardens were developed by Scottish immigrant William Thomson. Continue reading

Backyard Fireworks

My middle son purchased a box of fireworks to set off in the field behind our house. As soon as it stopped raining, he decided to head out through the wet grass in the dark with me and my tripod following behind. In my Fireworks Tutorial, I suggest that a flashlight is a useful item to bring along so that you can see your camera settings better and find black lens caps in the dark, etc. Of course, I didn’t bring a flashlight but otherwise followed all of my tutorial rules. I had never tried to photograph the backyard-style of fireworks before so this was a new experience for me. First difference between the backyard variety and the public displays is that you have no idea how high each of the shots will go. Since there tends to be only one of each kind of fireworks per box, you don’t get a second chance. This is what the box got us.

The first shot didn’t go very high so ended up looking more like a Star Wars light sabre than a fire works display.

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Canadian Tulip Festival – Day 2

The sun was shining today . At least, for awhile it was. That was all that was needed for some of the tulip beds to start showing their colours. Being Saturday, it meant that there were quite a few people concentrated in and around those beds that were in bloom. There was a nice bed of yellow tulips by the Dow’s Lake Pavilion and another nice bed of red tulips closer to the canal outlet.

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Canadian Tulip Festival starts May 6th, 2011

There are about 2 million publicly planted tulips in Ottawa just waiting to entertain residents and tourists alike when they burst into bloom. This year’s tulip festival takes place in Ottawa from May 6-23, 2011. My blog entries from Day 1, Day 2.

Unlike some other years, this year’s festival should see the tulips blooming closer to the end of the festival compared to some other years when hot, dry weather has shortened their blooming period. Our cool damp Spring, this year, should really help to keep them plump and in bloom over a longer period of time.

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A little walk – theme Autumn colours, Kanata, Ontario

A little walk – theme Autumn colours, Kanata, Ontario

Four days of photographing tropical butterflies in the Carleton University Butterfly Show has been fun but for a change in pace I took my father (92 y.o.) out for a little walk to see the Autumn colours around his residence. Macrodegeneration has stolen his sight and age had reduced the power of his legs but he can still see enough to know that change is once again in the air and all is not as green as it was only a few weeks earlier.
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Mediæval Fair at Osgoode, Ontario – 2010

2010 – Another year has passed by and once again Graeme and I find ourselves visiting Osgoode, Ontario to enjoy the jousting, the archery, the dancing and the costumed folks taking a step back in time to the mediæval days of the Kingdom of Osgoode. For more information about the performers visit their respective websites:
The Kingdom of Osgoode:
The Archery:
The King and his entourage:
The knights and their shining armor:
The Musicians:


As in the previous year, there were plenty of different clothing styles and colours to see if you keep your eyes open.

The knights in shining armor are not just there as decorations and participate in some pretty heavy duty and dangerous jousting competitions over the course of the Osgoode event.

For the spectators, there is plenty to see again this year. Music is supplied by the Celtic Sea and dance displays are scheduled throughout the day. Unlike 2009, this year, all of the events are in one locations so walking from one event to the other is much easier.

While the knights in shining armor were preparing for the next jousting contest, I continued to wander around the fair grounds photographing the many scenes.

Back at the jousting grounds, the saddles were still empty but spectators and photographers were beginning to claim their peace of real estate in preparation for the action that was soon to come.

Soon it was time to just sit back and enjoy the action as announcements were made, maidens were honored, some preliminary competitions showing speed, horsemanship and dexterity were out of the way, and then it was on to some heavy duty jousting action.

The jousting poles (lances) were ready. What were we waiting for?

Ah yes, before they lose their heads, each knight must select a young maiden to cheer them on and, of course, it is important to protect that head before trying not to lose it!


When contact is made, the modern day lance is designed to break in a safer manner. Still makes a great sound when lance hits armor and the splinters and parts fly into the air. Maximum points are scored when the opponent is unseated from his horse. This particular day, both riders scored points for serious contact on their opponent’s chest plate but both riders managed to stay aloft.

It was a hot day, and both knights wasted no time getting out of thier armor at the end of th ematch.

Jousting matches were enjoyed by the spectators who soon turned their attention to the other sport – shopping.

Every good Kingdom and just as in the past year, the Kingdom of Osgoode is no different. Always surrounded by beautiful women. Boy, what a royally tough job 🙂

Lots of good times. Hopefully, my travel plans for 2011 will allow me to visit the Kingdom of Osgoode again.

UPDATE: Another two year have passed by and now we have posted our shots from Kingdom of Osgoode 2012.

Ottawa Flickr Group Outing, Chelsea, Quebec

Ottawa Flickr Group Outing, Chelsea, Quebec

It was another wonderful day for an outing with some of the folks from the Ottawa Flickr group. Autumn colours were everywhere and the weather was beautiful.

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Baxter Conservation Area, Kars, Ontario

Autumn Colour

Baxter Conservation Area, Kars, Ontario

This day saw me traveling southward along the Rideau River until I reached the Baxter Conservation Area (Location) maintained and operated by the Rideau Valley Conservation Authority (RVCA). A nice sparkle of Fall was in the air and the autumn colours were beautiful.

Brown on Green

Covered Boardwalk

Mushroom Patterns

The Rot Within