Monday, March 02, 2009

Missed Ottertunity

We had a dramatic temperature change between Saturday and Sunday of those sweating on Saturday, freezing on Sunday events. It also rained late Saturday night ... not a lot, but it had not rained for awhile so that was eventful too.
High steady winds made Sunday feel a lot colder than it actually was and I found myself tossing on a third shirt over the two long-sleeved T-shirts that I THOUGHT would be adequate.
With the wind making lots of noise, I figured it might be productive to wander around in the woods a little. The white noise of wind in trees and bushes might allow me to be even more stealthy than usual.

That was my thinking anyway.

I went to a place that I can count on for stacked gators and sure enough they were there. None of them are in this post since you folks must get weary of gator shots ... I post them about as often as I post about making gumbo (made some last night actually).
So there I was, focused on the ever eager to please gators, when I happened to look behind me.
(You should always do that from time to time ... wherever you are)

Just as I looked down the grassy fire lane, a sleekly beautiful otter was loping across from one body of water to another.
I gave him a moment, and then left the gators and crept down to the water's edge allowing the whooshing grasses and cattails to mask my sound.
Then I waited.

Missed ottertunity, nonserendipitous moment.

I was gambling that the otter would come my way along the shoreline, and he did. Unfortunately, the GDDD cost me a perfect head and shoulders shot as he surfaced ten feet away and looked at me.
(Still pondering GDDD? ... the last two D's stand for Digital Delay can figure out the rest)

The feral hogs were not as lucky as the otter and they were transformed into megapixels.

I took this shot this morning as I lept into the JEEP on my way to work. The dogwoods are feeling frisky again.

In the mostly dry cypress swamps, the tug of spring is pulling grasses from the ground and flowers from buds, but at least for now, the cypress trees are still resting.


Florida Beach Basics said...

had the same GDDD experience with trying to take pix of manatees - 14 pix of flat water, finally one of the critter. do the feral hogs ever come close enough to bother your garden/pig?

Mark said...

Dogwoods in bloom already? Wow. You really are south of us.

Woodswalker said...

At least you laid eyes on your otter, even if your GDDD missed it. I've seen signs of otter for years where I paddle the Hudson in upstate NY -- piles of scat on islanded rocks, tracks in the snow, slides on muddy banks -- but I've yet to see one in the flesh. There's always hope. Thanks for the signs of spring. We need them up here in the frozen (but thawing!!!) north.

Ark Patti said...

Good to see Florida greening. My favorite sign of spring in Fl is the look of new growth on a cypress. Looks like lace from a short distance. Putting in a request for that shot in the future if you take requests.

robin andrea said...

I considered not posting the bobcat photo for the same reason you didn't want to post another gator shot. It's an embarrassment of riches. Great shot of the feral hogs and dogwood flowers.

I had a GDDD moment with a beautiful coyote on Saturday too. It made two appearances and both times the camera and I were not in sync. Dang.

C.L.J. said...

I kissed GDDD goodbye when I bought my digital SLR. Push the button, get the picture, every single time.

You can probably get a great deal on a Nikon D80 right now.

Pablo said...

So how do the otters and the gators get along? Is one a faster swimmer than the other perhaps?

Robert V. Sobczak said...

That's another day in paradise FC.

ChrisC and JonJ said...

We have a feral hog that walks down our road every evening.I thought it was a huge a$$ dog til JonJ corrected me.
Yep,that GDDD is a PITA.Missed a great shot of a heron taking flight from our backyard because of that.Words I said weren't purty

Floridacracker said...

Ditto Digital Delay Distress. No, the feral hogs do not seem to visit PFHQ.

The redbuds are in their 3rd week of blooming.

Brrr. I hope this is the year you see that otter!

A favorite of mine too. I will keep an eye on them and try to catch them when they are just so ...

If WE never get tired of those critters, I doubt if our guests do either!

That is a definite advantage. The DSLR will probably have to wait for my children to get out of college! $$$

I know I shouldn't pick favorites, but I can't help rooting for the otters.

Feels like it sometimes.

C and J,
I know those words.

amarkonmywall said...

After missing the past three days, this is like reading a novella in 3 parts! Great fun catching up. Let's see:

Abby has been asked to be the designated RV driver for the family she babysits for- they are going to the Jimmy Buffett concert in Tampa April 25. They got a ticket for her but she can be bought...Girl scientists DO rule. 'Nuff said.

I love the butter trick and plan to try it forthwith. I would gladly pay good money for a chocolate cake with ganache. GANACHE, silly. What kind of Top Chef are you?

Otters and dogwoods are two of my favorite things. And cypress knees. BTW, how's the pig?

SophieMae said...

Dawgawn that digital delay! It's pretty much a daily experience, ain't it? At least the dogwoods didn't trot away before you could snap. Tally is ablaze with blooms right about now. And my hog plum grove is even prettier than last year. Hopefully, no more freezes after this week!

As for the hogs, you shoulda shot those with somethng a bit more traditional.{*;*}

caroline said...

Love the thought of "resting" cypress trees. Everything is still resting here. Mountain bluebirds will be arriving back any day, that should convince the daffodillies to yawn and stretch and feel the tug of spring.

Ericka said...

ooh, otters are so cool. i've only ever seen them in zoos. *sigh* one day...

Ol' lurker said...

FC, I rarely have reason to disagree with you. But I must say, you can never have too many gators or too much gumbo. Just my opinion, of course.

Dani said...

We never get tired of your gator pics! Crazy man. ;)

I have a lot of those GDDD moments. Very hard sometimes being good with little ears present.

Floridacracker said...

How's that finger?
Lucky Abby! Buffett has priced himself out of my entertainment budget ... it's been a long time since used to play for free at the Tradewinds Bar in St. Aug.
Ohhhhhh, Ganache ... now I get it.

I shot the hogs on the way home through my windshield so ...

It's coming and I know it's a lot more special up there than here.

You will smile when it happens. Like dolphins, you can't watch an otter and not smile.

Ol Lurker,
Hah! WE are on the same wavelength friend.

In that case, tune in tomorrow!