In January, we visited the Bosque del Apache. There were still plenty of sand-hill cranes and snow geese, and a surprising number of eagles, and a coyote pacing around at sunset, frustrated by the birds' habit of bedding down out in the middle of a pond, beyond his easy reach.
At dawn, with the full moon falling toward the horizon, we watched the birds awaken. At first they slumbered. Then the snow geese made an incredible racket, while the sand-hill cranes miraculously appeared to sleep on. Eventually, as the moon disappeared, the snow geese swept into the sky, in a great cacophany of flapping wings and screeches, covering the sky almost completely. Enthralled, I shot the whole thing on videotape. I was hooked. (The January post has the video, unedited -- fast-forward to about the two-minute mark and watch the last 50 seconds for the fly-off.)
I resolved immediately to be there every full moon from September 2012 to January 2013. We skipped September because bad weather up in the Bosque would have made videotaping pointless -- and moonless; but we made it in October; and although mostly I was shooting video, this post contains stills from 28-30 October, mixed in with a travel tip or two.
|Autumn lent the scene a special richness.|
|Full Moon Rising - 28 October|
|Morning - 29 October|
Four consecutive exposures of these guys taking off.
|When we returned in the afternoon, |
this fellow was watching the snow geese
Moonrise - 29 October
|Cranes Flying - Morning of 30 October|
|Flying Cranes Reflected|