Wednesday, August 31, 2011


Ya jes' never know where that next photo-op will pop up.
Blackbirds at Bel Marin Keys.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Bel Marin Keys

"Paging Mr. Hitchcock!"
Red-winged Blackbirds swarming (or is it flocking?) in Bel Marin Keys this morning. Nobody seems to know how they do it. It is one of the major puzzles I would like to solve.

Monday, August 29, 2011

One More No More

This may be the last of the Romberg Center Series pictures. What can I say about it? It's  a staircase with a shadow. Though I could call it "Picture displaying the early dynamic psychoanalytic expression of the Freudian Oedipus Complex".

Sunday, August 28, 2011


Last Wednesday San Francisco was shrouded in fog, as an empty container ship made its way toward the Golden Gate Bridge. On board the pilot, whose boat was being towed behind the ship. At least that's my interpretation of what I saw from my perch on the Tiburon Hills.
Note the three-pronged Sutro Tower poking out of the fog. The 981 ft tower is located near San Francisco's geographic center and is used for TV and FM broadcasting transmissions.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Dog Show

Here's a guy I met at the Miller Avenue, Mill Valley Whole Foods Dog Show today. I was impressed!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Shollenberger Park

Shollenberger Park on Tuesday morning. I thought it was a lovely, tranquil scene. No,
I don't know the couple.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Romberg Center

Bob H and I are always hunting for San Francisco Bay Area spots that are off the beaten track. That's what took us to the Romberg Center in Tiburon a couple of days ago.
The mission of the Romberg Center for Environmental Studies (RTC) Marine Operations is to support San Francisco State University students, faculty and staff in conducting marine research at RTC by providing research vessels, oceanographic sampling equipment, operator safety training and field logistics support.
I took the attached picture from the Center. I believe the white birds are Royal Terns. The two black birds are Cormorants.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011


Window at the Romberg Center in Tiburon. With an eentsie-weentsie bit of manipulation.

The Dutch painter Piet Mondrian (1892 - 1944) was an important contributor to the De Stijl art movement. He evolved a non-representational form which he termed Neo-Plasticism. This consisted of white ground, upon which was painted a grid of vertical and horizontal lines.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Shollenberger Park

A lovely morning at Shollenberger Park in Petaluma. A teenage Mute (not really) Swan and a Green-Winged Teal. As far as identification of the latter is concerned, I sit to be corrected. But I'm sure you know that I took the picture for the interesting juxtaposition of the two boydz.

Monday, August 22, 2011


Blackbirds in Flight.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

McInnis Skatepark

This afternoon, after a two-year hiatus I paid a visit to the McInnis Skatepark in San Rafael, a stone's throw from the wonderful Ponds. It was quite crowded. What struck me immediately was that this time there were almost as many scooters as there were skateboards. Talking to a couple of parents, I learned that the scooters are often referred to a "Razors", the name of the major manufacturer (Cerritos, CA).
I was amazed at the agility and fearlessness of the kids, some as little as four or five.
The boy in my picture is older, and he was one of the few not wearing a helmet. I picked this picture for the sake of the shadow.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Banana Slug

Here's a Banana Slug I encountered at Lake Lagunitas this morning. Neither a "he", nor a "she", since Banana Slugs are hermaphrodites.

Banana Slugs use two pairs of tentacles to sense their environment. The larger, upper pair, termed "eyestalks," are used to detect light or movement. The second, lower pair are used to detect chemicals. The tentacles can retract and extend themselves to avoid damage.

And finally ~ the Banana Slug is the UC Santa Cruz mascot!

Friday, August 19, 2011

The Mountain

There seems to be no consensus as to the name of this mountain. Some call it BLACK MOUNTAIN, others refer to it as ELEPHANT MOUNTAIN. I've even heard it called THE FIST. Whatever its name may be, I took this picture a couple of days ago, from near the Point Reyes visitor center. The mountain is a favorite subject for painters as well as photographers, and you can see its likeness in all the Point Reyes Station gift shops. It is also touted in much of the B & B advertising of the area.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Early Morning in Point Reyes

The sun breaking through on the Bear Valley Trail early yesterday morning.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Henry in Person

The wait is over! You can all relax. Here's Henry in person. Isn't he gorgeous? In trying to identify him,  I meticulously checked all 3,000 American species. The closest I came was that he is a Crab Spider, but I wouldn't bet the farm on my identification.
Henry sends his regards!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Sublime Architecture

I'd love to take credit for this creation but, in fact, I had nothing to do with it. It's all Henry's work. Henry is my spider in residence. About a month ago, when quite young, he appeared on the outside of my kitchen window. He wove his web, set up a studio, and took up his watch. Since then he has tripled in size. Twice he ate his web, disappeared for a couple of days, then returned to the same exact spot, and constructed a new web. You must admit that Henry's artistry brings to mind the likes of architects such as French Charles-Eduard Jeanneret, better known as Le Corbusier, and Chinese-American Ieoh Ming Pei (I. M. Pei).
A likeness of the artist hisself may appear on my Daily E-mail within the next few days.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Green Heron

A Green Heron at the LGVSD Ponds this morning. A rare visitor and I was lucky to capture a picture.
My Sibley Guide to Birds says "The solitary, secretive Green Heron captures fish along wooded streams and ponds". That's all I know!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Corte Madera Marsh

Pelicans at the Corte Madera Marsh.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

From the Ridiculous to the Sublime

"From the Ridiculous to the Sublime" or, "Is the Old Man Finally Losing It?"
I saw two faces in this tattered leaf. Above ~ a smiling guy with a big nose (looking to the right), and below ~ A face looking to the left - perhaps the Bard?
And tomorrow, doing penance, probably a Pelican picture.

Friday, August 12, 2011


Daddy Bluebird feeding hungry junior.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Railroad Tracks

Mount Tam as seen from McInnis Park in San Rafael. Note the old railroad tracks.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011


LGVSD Pods Thistle airmailing its offspring to wherever the wind will take them.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Woolly Bear

Sometimes I wonder why I even bother to leave the building in search of wildlife, when it's right outside my door. Such was the case yesterday when I went to the Ponds. The trip was less than thrilling. But returning home I saw this guy/gal on the wall. Over 2" in length, it first looked like a piece of felt or velcro! However I identified it as a Woolly Bear Caterpillar, which apparently had gotten lost.
According to superstition, the amount of black in the caterpillar's  bristle coating forecasts the severity of the coming winter.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Mt. Tam

We don't need Mount Fuji. We have our Mount Tamalpais, lovingly referred to as Mount Tam, or just Tam. But also known as "Sleeping Lady", or Sleeping Maiden", following an old Indian legend.
She was a beautiful young Miwok maiden in love with an Indian prince. When he abandoned her, she walked to the top of the mountain nearby and died of heartbreak. As she sobbed, the mountain heard her intense sorrow and took pity. When finally she died, the mountain was so moved it changed its form, taking on the supine shape of her body and becoming the Sleeping Lady, our dear Mt. Tamalpais.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Face on Trail

Walking on the LGVSD trail this morning, I almost stepped on this cheerful(?) face. Perhaps I should not be trusted with a camera.

Saturday, August 6, 2011


You may recall that I promised you a picture of Danika, my other granddaughter, as soon as she arrived from Pennsylvania. Well, arrive she did, and here's her picture. Danika, twelve, is quite a ham, and she enjoyed modeling the Chinese coolie hat.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Yellow Star Thistles

This started out as Yellow Star Thistles and then I got a little crazy. Christmas card material?

Thursday, August 4, 2011


Not much happening at the Ponds these days, as most everybody has migrated north. But these Pelicans have decided to stay. Here you see them having breakfast.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011


Probably a female Mallard with her offsprings. Though the two stripes on the mother's neck confuse me. Anyway, it's a cute family.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011


Here's a picture of a Dandelion flower head next to a Dandelion seed head. The metamorphosis, as if by magic, takes place overnight. Though there are thousands of Dandelions at the Ponds right now, I haven't seen a single one half flower and half seed head.
You all know that each seed has a tiny parachute, to spread far and wide in the wind. But did you know that the flowers and leaves of the Taraxacum Officinale are edible and very nutritious? Don't take my word for this information though; do your own research instead.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Grand Finale

Here is the Grand Finale (Act Three) of the Goat Story. Goats go home, goat-herder gathers up fence (see picture), and deer families are re-united. All's well that ends well!