It’s hard to avoid habits, both good — if there is such thing — and bad. My favorite YMCA instructor used to preach that repeating the same routine day after day wouldn’t build new muscles so you needed to constantly switch your routines. I sometimes think that’s even truer in everyday life.

I’d like to think that blogging regularly is a “good habit,” but there are times when I question even that. Blogging regularly can get in the way of trying new things, particularly when those “new things” are unlikely to produce a significant blog entry. For example, I keep thinking I need to refine my Photoshop and Illustrator skills, but I’m reluctant to either discuss or post examples of either activity. In fact, one of the reasons I haven’t posted regularly lately is that I’m trying to work my way through Adobe Illustrator CS Five: Classroom In A Book, and so far I haven’t created anything I’d want anyone else to have to endure. Hopefully, in the long run just the opposite will be true, but that may or may not prove to be true.

Meanwhile, I’ll continue to post shots that I took before Christmas but never had time to post even though most of the shots are like ones I posted previously. For instance, this shot of a female belted Kingfisher probably isn’t one of the best I’ve ever taken, but it’s hard enough to get a picture of the one at Theler that I thought it was worth posting:

female Belted Kingfisher

Technically, this picture of a bald eagle in flight might be the and best picture of the day, but it’s not one of my favorites because I have become so habituated to seeing bald eagles.

Bald Eagle

The shot that made my day, though, was this one of a female Ring-Necked Pheasant because I haven’t seen one in years at Theler Wetlands.

female Ring-Necked Pheasant

The shot came at the end of the walk when essentially I was through birding and was just enjoying my conversation with John. I hadn’t seen a Ring-Necked Pheasant at Theler for years. In other words, it was totally unexpected.

7 thoughts on “Habituated”

  1. HI Loren,
    I mentioned I hadn’t seen a Ring-necked Pheasant in the 30 years I’ve lived here. Then we saw the one above, and today I saw a cock Ring-necked at the entrance to Manchester State Park. Funny how that works.

  2. You are far too hard on yourself (photographically, that is.) As far as I can see, you’ve never taken (or posted) a bad photo.

    1. Luckily, most of the bad photos end up in the trash, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t still need to look for ways of making better photos. It’s improving that keeps me interested.

      I’m sure you do the same on floral arrangements.

  3. Great to see and hear the sightings of the ring necks. Back in the day I could not drive to work in the Ray Nash Valley without spotting one or two on a fence post. And then the influx of people, houses, dogs. This is a wonderful piece to read. thanks, kjm

  4. Great pictures as always. We are not as inured to seeing Bald Eagles as you here in NJ – but we did get an amazing view of one flying right over the NY State Thruway on our way up to the Adirondacks – flew right over the highway at a low altitude and landed in a tree. Amazing sight!

    1. I did an earlier post on how rekindling that sense of “amazement” has been the best part of birding for me.

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