Candid moments that reflect the Gift of life; a random collection of beauty queens, music legends, cowboys, flyboys, moms, and kids that I’ve crossed paths with along the journey…
Over the years I’ve always enjoyed the beautiful images of Painted Buntings in my ancient field guide. Not more than a few moments after I mentioned to the Great Spirit that it would be a special treat to see one first hand, I was fortunate to have this male light on a fence at my refuge near Athens Texas.
Hopefully you’ll be so fortunate in your next nature walk; in the meantime you’re welcome to share in my blessing.
A pair of Pileated Woodpeckers raised their brood high above the ground in a standing dead pine near Athens Texas. The adults made three large holes to access their nest. The dead pine they selected is approximately 43 years old and very much on its last leg with no remaining limbs and barely any lower bark left. It’s surrounded by healthy pines of the same vintage.
Far too much standing dead timber has been cleared unnecessarily over the years. Along with many conservation minded Texas landowners we’re implementing a wildlife management plan at our private refuge with the goal of keeping the land as native as possible including leaving standing dead timber so that woodpeckers will have nesting refuge as they often prefer the tallest standing dead pines when selecting timber to build their nest.
The brood consisted of a male and female. On the first Saturday in May in 2010 they joined the adult female on the nearest limb and took wing for the first time abandoning their nest leaving it for another species to occupy.
As someone who greatly enjoys offering a fly to the aquatic species at my ancient fish & game club as well as trout streams along my journey, I’m hopeful that a little horse trading will bring me better luck as I chase elusive submerged creatures. Since my pleasure comes from capturing images and offering flies on secluded water, I propose a swap; your favorite homemade fly for a digital image of your fly.
The work of artisans that craft their own flies, combined with news of personal best on a fly catches inspired me to make this offer. While it’s been said many times not to let facts get in the way of a good fishing story, I’m hopeful that at least some of those personal best on a fly records that have been reported were actually caught on homemade flies instead of live bait drowned under a red & white bobber.
With that in mind, if your talent is tying flies instead of macro photography, send me your favorite fly and I’ll shoot it in my macro studio and return a digital image via email. Your masterpiece fly will be a welcomed addition to my growing collection. Below is an example of what you can expect in return.