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Old Oct 9, 2011, 5:36 PM   #1
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Default Plant kingdom wildlife

What do you shoot when you sign up for a photo tour trip at a wildlife refuge and the wildlife forget to show up. Well, more accurately, they haven't really arrived yet. Due to the wet spring the migrating water fowl are a little behind their schedules for arrival in the Central Valley of California this year. So after getting to the refuge parking lot at 6am and going out to shoot a sunrise without a cloud in the sky. We had to improvise. This is where I pointed my camera. I decided to focus on the vegetation that is so abundant in the wetlands and yet rarely gets the attention it deserves.

First, Smartweed. This plant is one of the staple foods that the wintering water fowl feed on. Look at all those seeds. This little weed out yields rice pound for pound per acre. Amazing.
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Old Oct 9, 2011, 5:38 PM   #2
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Bull Thistle. Not a food but it is a really nasty looking thing and yes those spins do hurt if you grab them.
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Old Oct 9, 2011, 5:40 PM   #3
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Another Bull thistle with the water as a background. I was surprised how well my Nikon 200-400mm VR with a 1.4tc worked as a macro lens.
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Old Oct 9, 2011, 5:43 PM   #4
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California burr, Xanthium orientale I think these were the inspiration for velcro.
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Old Oct 9, 2011, 5:44 PM   #5
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More Smartweed. In early morning light. About 20 minutes after full sunrise.
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Old Oct 10, 2011, 6:06 PM   #6
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Oh, what a shame the wildlife didn't show up. At least it wasn't a wasted early morning
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