The Bluebird of Happiness

I didn’t get a chance to see nearly as many birds last week in Santa Rosa as I did in the previous visit, but we got more sunshine than we did in the previous visit. I think there was only one partially cloudy day our whole week there. Otherwise, everything came up Blue Skies.

Since we stayed closer to home, I spent more time than in the previous trip trying to capture the ultimate shot of the Mockingbird and the Western Scrub Jay that seem to make their home in Mary’s yard.

Perhaps not surprisingly, my favorite shot of the Mockingbird is this one, which I took the first day I was there:

Mockingbird on Post

I have a much harder time deciding which is my favorite Western Scrub Jay photos, perhaps because all have a fundamental flaw. For instance, technically this might be the best shot because the light and background were excellent:

Western Scrub Jay on Roof

but I don’t like the fact the Jay is sitting on a man-made object.

I also liked this shot, even the angle looking down, but the grass seems rather distracting to me.

Scrub Jay on Lawn

For awhile, I thought I’d go the perfect shot of this Western Bluebird the very first time I’d ever seen one, but the more I look at it, the less happy I am with the blue of the lake in the background. Unfortunately, I’ve not found a good way to alter it without also destroying the colors in the bird itself. And, of course, in the photos I took with the grass in the background there are harsh shadows which detract from the bird itself.

Western Bluebird

Perhaps it’s best that the perfect photo seems to evade me just as eternal happiness continues to mock me. Otherwise, all the expensive photo equipment I’ve gathered in the last few years would have to be disposed of and a new pursuit pursued.

5 thoughts on “The Bluebird of Happiness

  1. Relax, they’re all great (though yes, that lawn – what could be more ‘man-made’?). Somewhere at home in Australia I have a beautiful little blue feather, a souvenir of my hike on the Appalachian Trail. I think I picked it up in Virginia. I asked a Southern friend what bird it came from and he instantly replied, “Blue jay.”

  2. I’m happy just to see a photo of a bluebird. I’ve got plenty of jays, but I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a bluebird before. These are all nice shots.

  3. Enjoyed your photos of California birds. Thanks especially for the bluebird! I’ve never seen one, even though I grew up a little bit south of Santa Rosa on the San Francisco Peninsula.

    I do remember growing up with mockingbirds and the Scrub Jays. Here is a wonderful 9:23 sound clip of a Northern Mockingbird. My cat, Oboe, came to look at the computer when the mockingbird began to sing.

    http://animalbehaviorarchive.org/loginPublic.do

What do you think?