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2021 Shooting Day #2 – Rocking R6 Ranch

April 13, 2021
© Jim Miller – Curve-billed Thrasher (Toxostoma curvirostre)

Crescent Bend was a wonderful appetizer. But the main course was coming the following morning.

My shooting companion and I were up before sunrise, headed down to the Rocking R6 Ranch in northern Webb County. This was my 8th consecutive year to make it down to the ranch. This was my shooting companion’s first opportunity to shoot in a blind on a private ranch.

Visiting the Rocking R6 is always an amazing experience. This visit did not break the mold.

My good friend, Butch Ramirez, greeted us at the gate and not too long after we arrived we were in the Morning Blind. Great variety of birds with good light. While we did not know it at the time, one of those birds was a Song Sparrow, which all three of us got images of. The Song Sparrow was the 100th bird species for which an image had been made on the ranch.

From the morning blind we moved onto the updated Cactus Blind. Tons of good birds in that blind as well, though my favorite without a doubt was the Curve-billed Thrasher. So much character.

Towards mid-day we adjourned from the blind, came in for lunch and the requisite mid-day nap before heading back out to the blinds.

When we returned outside, clouds had rolled in and the light quality changed significantly. Still workable light, but rather than going to the standard sunken afternoon blind we stayed at the Cactus Blind. Another great set of images out of the afternoon shoot.

As the light faded at sunset we called it a night. It was a 30 species day by the time it was all said and done. By far the most number of bird species we saw in a single day for the entire trip. Can’t wait to come back next year to make it 9 years in a row.

My shooting companion had faded like the setting sun, too. I was also really tired. Our plans to find someplace for a sit-down dinner turned into running through a drive-thru and finding our way back to the hotel room. A day of shooting is very taxing. Every shot or burst of shots is another moment of finding a subject, making split-second decisions, pressing the shutter, and then getting ready for the next shot or burst. It’s exhilarating. It’s tiring. And it feels amazing.

About the image:
Curve-billed Thrasher (Toxostoma curvirostre)
Webb County, Texas – March 2021
Canon 7D Mark II, Tamron 150-600 (Gen 1)
Tripod w/Wimberley gimbal head
ISO 400, 1/400 at f/11 – No Flash

Portfolio Image #1041
Image Size in Portfolio: 4020×3216

One Comment leave one →
  1. April 14, 2021 8:06 am

    So beautiful.

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