Two Random Pics: A Pelican Landing and a Yellow-Crowned Night Heron Preening

Recently there was a photo contest calling for submissions of pictures representing activities and wildlife at White Rock Lake. Neither Q nor I had ever entered a photo contest before, so we decided to do so for fun, not expecting anything would come of it (and we were right!). I was trying to choose between several pelican pics that I really liked, but when Q saw one of them, he became very emphatic.

“This one. Choose this one. You have a great deal of action and excitement with the diagonal pelican slicing through the frame.”

American white pelican (Pelecanus erythrorhynchos) descending to land at White Rock Lake in Dallas, TX

OH SHIT, WHERE DO I LAND?

In early July I’d seen quite a bit of a yellow-crowned night heron who kept preening, sunbathing, hunting crawdads, bathing, and preening again on and near a concrete chunk in the lower section of the spillway. I chose one of my favorite pics of her.

Yellow-crowned night heron (Nyctanassa violacea) grooming at White Rock Lake in Dallas, TX

Don’t hate me because I’m beautiful.

A Dallas birder, photographer, and blogger, Ben, did get an honorable mention, so I was glad to see that.

UPDATE: The winning pics are up, and . . . uhhhhhhh . . .

Some birder/photographers who have much more experience regarding this contest than I told me that the contest was unprofessional (in the context of real photography contests with real judges). The “judges,” who were not named or described (if I am remembering correctly), tended to choose extremely boring and/or clich├ęd pics. The photographers joked to each other that there HAD to be a pic of a dock as a winner!

Except they weren’t joking. Three dock-related pics were winners/honorable mentions! There were some pics that I liked, but in general . . . man . . .

If Q or I enter this contest again, we have a much better idea of what wins. Or, as Q said, “We can take a break while riding around the lake and snap a shitty picture of some boats or the landscape and win!”