29 January 2009

Dawn on the coast of Ghana

Dawn on the coast of Ghana
No one else was up. The only things moving were a few fast-flying birds, big sand crabs, clouds and the sea. Sunlight touched the beach; heat and humidity began to build.

All content © 2009 Pete McGregor

28 January 2009

Mid-Pohangina evening

Mid-PohanginaAnother from the whio survey before Christmas. Mid-Pohangina hut sits in a small clearing on the river terrace on the right-hand side of the photo, to the right of those big, semi-silhouetted trees. I came across a pair of whio downstream from here; roughly halfway between the swingbridge and the Cattle Creek confluence. Beautiful birds in a beautiful place.
All content © 2009 Pete McGregor

27 January 2009

Red rock, swift water, Pohangina river

Rock and water, Pohangina riverMain stream, Pohangina river just before Christmas 2008, while I surveyed the headwaters for whio.

[I'm back. Normal posting has resumed.]

All content © 2009 Pete McGregor

16 January 2009

Bantam egg [2]

Bantam egg
The second in the series. Not sure if there'll be more, not least because I'm eating them.

All content © 2008 Pete McGregor

12 January 2009

Cabin curtain

Early morning and the sun rises over the ocean, lighting up the curtain in the little one-room cabin at Flounder Bay.

All content © 2008 Pete McGregor

10 January 2009

Offline for a while [Flounder Bay rock pool]

Rock poolI'm offline for a while, so posting will be sporadic for the next couple of weeks. I've scheduled a few photos so drop back in from time to time. Feeds, of course, will be updated automatically.

The photo is from July last year; evening near Flounder Bay.

All content © 2008 Pete McGregor

09 January 2009

"Grandfather", Barda Hills

Elderly man, Barda Hills
He lived with his extended family in the arid, thorny Barda Hills, not far from Kileswar. He spoke no English; I had about two words of the local language, but words seemed unnecessary to communicate what was most important.

All content © 2008 Pete McGregor

08 January 2009

Woman at Kileswar [2]

Local woman, KileswarI had a strong impression this woman was one of two who were responsible for much of the day to day running of the Maharajah's retreat at Kileswar in Gujarat's Barda Hills. When we first arrived, she, like most locals we met, maintained a dignified politeness. A kind of cautious welcome. By the end of the week, we were treated to smiles like this.

Only women were tattooed this extensively. Afterwards, we were told, the swelling is so severe that eating is not possible for about three days.

All content © 2008 Pete McGregor

07 January 2009

Woman at Kileswar

Local woman, Kileswar
One of the local women who ran the Maharajah's retreat at Kileswar. During the course of a week, the local people seemed to relax and even enjoy having the strangers around. I felt honoured to receive smiles like these.

All content © 2008 Pete McGregor

06 January 2009

Californian quail

Californian quailPhotographed through window glass in rural Nelson (South Island). He'd potter around on the verandah, peering inside.

All content © 2008 Pete McGregor

05 January 2009

Slate Row at the Celtic [impression]

Late November 2007; my Slate Row friends played at the Celtic. I photographed under dim, coloured lights; experimented a bit, and liked this. The other photos were more conventional.
[f = 24 mm; 1/15 s at f4.0; ISO 1600]

All content © 2008 Pete McGregor

04 January 2009

Pohangina River

Pohangina River
Detail of a small waterfall (about a metre high) in the headwaters of the Pohangina between Ngamoko and Leon Kinvig huts.

All content © 2008 Pete McGregor

03 January 2009

Kaka; Pukaha–Mt Bruce

Kaka (Nestor meridionalis
Aotearoa New Zealand has three endemic species of large parrots. One, the kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) ranks among the world's rarest parrots, with a total population of only 90 birds. The population of kea (Nestor notabilis) is estimated at fewer than about 5000 (perhaps substantially less) and declining. Kaka (Nestor meridionalis), while apparently the most numerous with up to about 10,000 birds, are declining rapidly throughout much of mainland New Zealand. Some large, predator-free offshore islands like Little Barrier and Kapiti support high populations of kaka, but on the mainland the females are particularly vulnerable to predation by stoats because they nest in holes in trees. The bird in the photo is part of a wild but human-habituated flock of North Island kaka (N.m. septentrionalis) at Pukaha–Mt Bruce in the Wairarapa.

Internationally, roughly a quarter to a third of all parrot species are threatened in the wild. Charlie at 10,000 birds has an excellent post introducing "Parrot Month", so head on over and enjoy the read and the photos.

All content © 2009 Pete McGregor

02 January 2009

Penultimate evening of 2008

Evening, Pohangina Valley
Evening of 30 December 2008; the view from the verandah. It's a few minutes earlier than the wall photo. Nothing fancy, just a record shot. In general, I'm not inspired by sunset photos; they've been (almost) done to death and seldom live up to the real thing. This photo is perhaps characterised more by subtlety than spectacle, but it's as close as I can get to how the evening appeared.

All content © 2008 Pete McGregor

01 January 2009

Snapshot: kitchen, life

Kitchen notes
My handwriting's generally neater than this — it looks less (much less, I trust) like something left by a drunk fowl with inky feet. It seems to be legible, though. Anyway, I needed to check the time stamp on the camera, so I just pointed it at hip level and fired off a shot so I could compare the time in the EXIF data with the actual time. This is what I got (excluding the notes, of course). I kind of liked it — everything slightly but significantly blurred; off level; a kind of dreamy softness and casualness. "Why not?" I thought, trusting my regular viewers' sense of silliness.

All content © 2008 Pete McGregor