Sky Floating~

Sand Hill Cranes
magnificent fliers
floating in space.
They drift by

like giant ballons
untethered by human hands.
Proud silhouettes

kissed by the golden sunset.
Cheers to you from the wintering cranes at the Salton Sea~

233 thoughts on “Sky Floating~

  1. What graceful beauty queens the Sand Hill Cranes are.
    Cindy, the last photo is out of this world fabulous. Congratulations!
    Remind me, where is the Salton Sea? xo

    1. Ahhh, thank you! I have several of these, but I just added a sunset panaroma since you liked it. The Salton Sea is in Southern California half way between the ocean and the border with Arizona. It is a two hour drive from The Holler~

  2. What an amazing feeling it must be to float around like that. We don’t have such exotic birds here, but love to watch the gulls enjoying themselves from our front window as they bounce around on the breeze πŸ™‚

    1. You were at Salton City which is like some post-apocalyptic ghost town. Eerie place. The lake is huge. These photos were taken at The Sonny Bono Nature Reserve Unit 1. 6 million birds shelter at the lake each year because it is on the Pacific migratory flyway. There are two of these reserves. They are south-east of where you were.

      1. That is wonderful news, especially that she followed in your footsteps. The road from my LSW ro LCSW is a long one, but every journey is one step at a time. We do need more of us.

        Happy Holidays! love, Linda

    1. They aren’t here for the courtship only for the winter but they still did jump several times. I am going to visit and practice photographing them more. They are very hard to get close to. I would love to see the courtship too!

  3. Those are very beautiful photos, Cindy! Especially the last two. I am always in awe of golden lighting. It has a magical feel to it. Those should be framed an on your wall!

  4. So graceful! No wonder cranes are often the subject of art (particularly in Asian cultures). I really can’t pick any favorite pictures here as they are beautiful no matter what they’re doing – floating in the sky, standing tall, or wading in the water against a golden backdrop. All of these are gorgeous! <3

    1. Cranes are a symbolic artistic icon in lots of gorgeous Asian art. I suspect it has to do with the graceful and unusual way they move and fly, and their choreographed mating dances. Wonderful creatures!

    1. That is exactly what I did. They don’t like being followed by a human, but at the end of the day, they were tired and I could almost see them thinking, “she’s very annoying, but harmless, and I getting ready to sleep, so just ignore her.”
      Laughing~ 🐦

  5. Amazing aren’t they. I believe they mate for life too like swans and storks. We have a pair of herons here in the marina, but think they tend to argue a lot as they are normally apart!

    1. Here’s the amazing thing about this. They mate for life, but they have an annual courtship dance. These intelligent birds never stop the courtship phase of their relationship. How smart is this!🐦

      1. Well I read that first comment about how u added it (and too many to read more of the comments ) never heard of the 8 is enough rule and I actually like it as an overarching guideline – with some leeway like here….
        Guess it depends – but I really like that rule so thanks for sharing it

  6. Really delightful portrait of the grace and magnificence of the sandhill crane, Cindy. Your photos are really exquisite. I’ve spent every winter for the last quarter century chasing sandhill cranes up in northern California in the Pacific Flyway, and it is really hard to get this kind of photo! Usually they don’t come in until it’s so dark that the light is bad, or it’s rainy or overcast, or they’re impossibly far away. I’ll say it again: exquisite.

    1. I am so grateful that you know how difficult it is to photograph these guys. It requires so much perseverance, such a slow and continuous approach. They are very wary and always move just out of range of a good shot. I want to keep trying. They are a two hour drive for me, so I can’t be there enough for them to get used to me, but I did notice that after tromping after them for half a day, as the sun started to set, I could get closer. They were either tired, or tired of me, maybe both. Laughing…..
      Thank you Athena. It is wonderful you know and share the process. 🐦

            1. I was at their nest and saw an adult fly away. I saw bird carcass in the nest for the chicks but didn’t want to get close enough to scare or disturb the chicks. I would love to see them too, but respect that they don’t want to see me! πŸ¦‰

  7. Beautiful photos. We lived in Kissimmee, Florida for a while and had both migrating and resident flocks. I loved watching them fly to the lake at dusk. And the noise they make!

    1. Their calls are awesome and so distinctive, and the sound of the wings when a huge flock take to the sky, is just really special. They are so beautiful in flight, it looks like the take offs are in slow motion. You are lucky to have lived among them 🐦🐦

  8. Have seen Sandhills nearly all of my life, Cindy. On the farm as I grew up, on lakes and rivers, and even in Florida when I lived there. They seem a solid constant, like a fixed star to me. Thanks for the wonderful reminder. The pics are so clear and crisp it’s like looking out of my window. The pics at sunset are stunning ! Ya done a great job (again)! πŸ™‚

    1. How lucky you are! For me they are a rarity, reminds me of when I travel. In Africa once I was excited about photographing crocodiles on a river. The Africaner women who saw me asked, “Why are you taking photos of those? They are so common.” Not to me. I have only seen them in the wild a handful of times.

  9. I’d love to see these birds, but oddly they have never been reported on Abaco, despite their strong wings. It’s a relatively short flight across from Florida… and they could even pause on Grand Bahama en route. But they have never been reported there either… So it looks like I’ll have to go to them! RH

  10. Dearest Cindy, I am sure it is a very busy time for you… I am of course with my darling Michele a little on the sad side, I try not to think about it.. I do miss you all.. especially you and a couple others. well good nite my friend
    I am therefore I am.. is that the right way you say it.. I love it.. may I use it on my other blogs..
    I will put your sculpture up again..

  11. I love birds, Cindy! Your post so often features them which is a true blessing. I think of them as “winged messengers” like earth’s angels. Thank you for the extra bonus of a gorgeous sunset thrown in. πŸ™‚ hugs xo

      1. You are so kind and accepting of my inconsistent visits, Cindy. Just like a great friend, picking up where we left off. . .
        My Dad’s name was Robert, which in a rare way of his he chose to name me, the first one after himself. I treasure that the precious page boy haircut of Christopher Robin became Robin (he does resemble a girl with his cloak on πŸ™‚ ) who my Dad read to me as a young toddler in “House at Pooh Corner.” My younger brothers and I finally learned he was a boy when we went to school. πŸ˜‰
        Thank you for the sweet name compliment which brought back this short story to share with you. <3

  12. For a moment there I felt I too was soaring πŸ™‚ Needless to say I loved the photos and your thoughts – “untethered by human hand; proud silhouettes kissed by the golden sunset” Speechless.

  13. Amazing photos Cindy– they look so stately! I can’t believe the variety of life you find everywhere… So hope you are enjoying getting ready for Christmas. I wrapped the last gift today– hooray! Christmas hugs from here to you!

    1. I enjoy the whole Christmas hoopala, the cooking and the decorating, the eggnog and homemade cookies. I just need to get rid of 2 more pounds before I can commence gaining them back again! The best of the Season to you Rhonda~ <3

    1. Please touch base with me before you go so I can direct you to the areas where you will see the masses of birds and also give you some tips on places to stay and dine. Many parts of The Salton Sea are like a post apocalyptic wasteland so you will want to be selective!

  14. Love to see the cranes. I’m very happy to see that they choose to visit the area. Perhaps there’s hope for the life of that lake still. I read a devistating report about this lake being an environmental disaster. With the drought and lack of run off from the area, it’s very much like the area we used to live in. Here in Alberta, it’s the Cooking Lake Moraine. A vast area of wetlands and grassy lakes. All are low and the window of surviving is closing…sigh

    1. The thing that is amazing about The Salton Sea is that it has been this hugely agriculturally polluted body of water for some time but it continues to support millions of thriving migratory birds. SoCal is finally getting a series of rain storms now. This will help the birds and the sea as it was rapidly evaporating. You are a good friend, my friend. Be well~ <3

  15. She’s got her mojo a workin’ but it just won’t work for me! Oh she’s got her mojo a workin’ as good, as good as it can be! Cindy’s got her mojo a workin’ and she’s as could as she can be! πŸ˜ŠπŸ˜ŠπŸ˜ŠπŸ‘β€οΈπŸ˜˜

            1. I will. Freud said flying dreams of flying were dreams of death. I don’t agree, but do see them as dreams of transcendence. I don’t dream this as much as imagine it! You can imagine it too! <3 <3

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