Wednesday, February 29, 2012


I'll have to get a woodpecker to help me remember where I parked my car.
This one near the Visitor Center in Point Reyes.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012


Mademoiselle Louise Quail was late for her appointment.
This morning at Point Reyes.

Monday, February 27, 2012

The Times They Are A-Changin'

For years there was not a single deer on the island at the LGVSD Ponds. Lately they have been swimming, or wading, across. This morning we saw four. They must have discovered some gourmet grass. Bon Appetit!

Another View

Another view of the Richmond - San Rafael Bridge. This one from the mysterious trail atop the Robert Dollar Drive (really) in San Rafael. Yesterday.

Saturday, February 25, 2012


Justin Herman Plaza, in front of the Ferry Building in San Francisco, is a real mecca for skateboarders. I happened by on Thursday. And before you complain, let me assure you that they are very respectful of pedestrians. The name of the guy in my picture is Larry.

Friday, February 24, 2012

We are the 99%

The "Occupy" movement was alive and well, yesterday afternoon, on San Francisco's Market Street. And the two gentlemen readily posed for me.

Thursday, February 23, 2012


Juvenile Western Gulls have no manners. Here's a teenager screaming at an adult to get off his/her rock. Admittedly, the rock is covered with delicious roe, but that's no excuse for being rude. Why, in my day ...........................

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Brown Pelican

We have mostly White Pelicans in Marin County, therefore I always get excited when I see a Brown Pelican in our waters. The one in the picture came to check out the multitude of Western Gulls in Sausalito the other day. Isn't she/he gorgeous?
Brown Pelicans are quite common on the other side of the Golden Gate Bridge, in San Francisco's Marina.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Photo Art Trouvee

There is nothing new under the sun. Thus barbed wire (also known as "devil's rope") is used to create works of art. There is a Barbed Wire Museum in La Crosse, Kansas. There are barbed wire collectors and a Barbed Wire Collectors Show, exhibiting thousands of different styles.
My contribution is a picture of, what I thought was, a beautiful composition, just waiting to be photographed. I tried hard to find the name for the barbed wire. The closest I came was "Razor Wire", but I'm not sure that's correct.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Sea Lion

Along with the gulls I spotted five Sea Lions, diving for herring. The gulls were not at all disturbed by the huge animals. Anyway, here's one of them.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Western Gulls

So, (popular sentence opening) I was on the Sausalito waterfront, near the Bay Model. And I saw more Western Gulls in one spot than I have ever seen. At least I think they were Western Gulls, but I keep getting chided when I say Sea Gulls. "Ya gotta be specific"! Anyway, they were just sitting there, making an ear-splitting ruckus. More about the gulls and their raison d'etre tomorrow.

Saturday, February 18, 2012


A dearth of wildlife at the Ponds forced me into unanticipated and unplanned creativity.

Friday, February 17, 2012



Thursday, February 16, 2012

Opposites Attract

This picture (taken at Schollenberger Park) proves, beyond the shadow of a doubt, that opposites attract.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012


Should you visit the Loma Verde Open Space Preserve, beware of what lurketh in the tall grass!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012


Searching through my files, the attached is as close as I could get to a Valentine's card. It dates back to the late Nineteenth Century.
This card is one of several that Woolson Spice Co (Toledo, Ohio) inserted into each one pound package of Lion Coffee beans. The cards are referred to as "trade cards", probably because people collected and traded them. I was fortunate to find a few of them in a thrift store several years ago. The cards are still being advertised on the Internet for around $15.00 each.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Agelaius phoeniceus

Red-winged Blackbird at Schollenberger Park in Petaluma. It seems that, where there are Cattails, there are Red-winged Blackbirds. I used to think that their bright epaulets served to attract females, only to learn that the display is used in territorial defense. Go figure!
Agelaius phoeniceus, the Latin name, sounds very romantic, doesn't it?

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Pussy Willow

Pussy Willow, this morning at Schollenberger Park in Petaluma. Note the strands of spider-webbing, tastefully decorated with dew drops.

Saturday, February 11, 2012


Canada Geese on an early morning field trip. Today's topic "What's for breakfast"?

Friday, February 10, 2012

Snowy Egret

Snowy Egret taking off. This morning at the LGVSD Ponds.
This beautiful bird species had a very close brush with extermination early in the 20th century. Beginning in the late 19th century, the plumes were in great demand by makers of women's hats. Thousands of egrets were shot, usually in the nesting colony, and stripped of their delicate feathers with the bodies discarded where they fell. Because the birds were slaughtered during the breeding season, the impact was exaggerated, resulting in the loss of breeding adults and the dependent young that died from starvation.

Intensive educational efforts by a man by the name of Pearson and the National Association of Audubon Societies brought the devastation to the attention of the American public.

An enlightened public and aggressive protection of the breeding colonies that remained allowed the snowy egret to rebound throughout its range following the feather trade.

Yes, I copied the above in part from the web!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Curious Sparrow

On our Chimney Rock trip, Bob H and I visited the old Coast Guard Station. While inside, I noticed a Sparrow watching our every move. He/she seemed really curious. I would really like to know what birds think. As a child, in Vienna, I thought a sparrow was a sparrow, period. I had no idea they were not all the same (though perhaps there was only one species in Vienna?) As far as the one at Chimney Rock is concerned, my best guess is that it was a Song Sparrow.
Question ~ Can a Sparrow be pigeon-toed?

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Back to the Elephant Seals

I don't know what their beef (beef?) was, but these two bulls got into a major battle. Cherchez la femme? Note the tusk. Not a great picture but the seals didn't realize they were on stage. The fight lasted only a couple of minutes, then they separated and went on their separate ways.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Tule Elk

Here's another one from my vast collection.
Jeep stopped to allow Tule Elk to cross the road near Tomales Point in Point Reyes.
Elk were native to the area but, by 1860, had almost disappeared due to hunting. In 1978 two bulls and eight cows were re-introduced to the area. Today, the population numbers about 500.
The mating and rutting season lasts from the end of July to mid-October. It must have been during this time that I took the picture, because you see both bulls and cows. At other time the sexes don't mix. This is not gospel, but merely my own observation.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Hans Goes Bananas

Stacked chairs, yesterday at the Osher Marin JCC, plus a teeeeny bit of Photoshop.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

That's a Lotta Bull

Back to the Elephant Seal rookery.
Bulls grow to 13-18 feet, and weigh 3-4,000 lbs. During the mating season, while on land, they lose 30% of their weight. They have been known to dive to 5,000 ft, and stay under for up to two hours. Hm!

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Sickening Conceit

After receiving deafening (well, at least audible) applause for my Nostalgia picture, I am drunk with success, and cannot resist the temptation of posting another picture, taken on that same moonlit night, in Sausalito. This one is of the good boat "Tiffany". Tomorrow I'll return to the present. (Can one do that?)


Once in a while I wax nostalgic. For the past few days I have been attacking my voluminous files of 4" x 6" prints, and getting rid of 90% of them. Plus all my negatives (I can scan my prints).
So, while I prefer to show daily (as the name implies) photographs, once in a while, I like to delve into the past. So here is a picture of a Hornblower yacht, taken from Sausalito, in 1988. I found that, four years later, Hornblower Yachts changed its name to Hornblower Cruises. I have no idea whether the boat in my picture is still around, and whether Hornblower is still sailing around the San Francisco Bay.
Latest reports have it, that the moon is still around though.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Elephant Seals

This morning Bob H and I headed out to Chimney Rock in Point Reyes, roughly fifty miles from Greenbrae. There to see the breeding colony of Elephant Seals from the Elephant Seal Overlook. December through March is the time to go. We could hear them from the parking lot, 1/4 mile away. A sound similar to a class of kindergartners let loose, interspersed with the loud trumpeting and gurgling sounds (like a flushing toilet) of the bulls. Two docents with spotting-scopes explained what was going on. 175 pups and their moms, plus a few dads populated the beach, while gulls stood around, hoping for placenta from the birthings. I could go on, but I'll let you do some Googling or, better yet, go and see for yourself. One last word - Elephant Seal milk contains 25% fat!

Thursday, February 2, 2012


Northern Shovelers, on a double-date, trolling for lunch. A few days ago, at the LGVSD Ponds.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Gong Xi Fa Cai

Wishing you to be prosperous in the coming year!
This E-mail is in honor of Chinese New Year. 2012 is the year of the dragon according to the Chinese Zodiac. I lived in Shanghai from 1938 (I was ten) to 1949. During some of this time my parents and I were Chinese citizens. The attached picture shows me, when I was fifteen, with two friends, on a visit to the city of Wuxi. Isn't it amazing that I haven't changed a bit!