Tuesday, June 8, 2010

ABC Wednesday: U is for UsUal vs. UnUsUal

Last Saturday, I packed up my camera and went out to have the Usual drive through the picturesque back road (Route 6A) of Cape Cod.  The Unusual thing about the drive was that Grace was not with me this time.  She left two-day ago for Chicago then back to Taiwan.  Our Usual drives were also Usually not planned.  It was Unusual this time, I checked the tide table and well-planned my trip to visit some of the beaches and parks that we have not been before.

Route 6A goes alone the coast of the northern side of Cape Cod and it is Unusual because it goes through some the most picturesque and least touristic parts of Cape Cod.  It is lined with old towns, century-old houses, small museums, antique shops and fine-restaurants.  My first stop was Corporation Beach of Dennis.  Dennis is a bit Unusual because the town covers a land stretches from the Cape Cod Bay at north to the Atlantic Ocean at south.   Thus it has beaches on both sides, a plus for local residences because you need beach sticker, only the local residences can have, to park at any of these beaches.  Corporation Beach is facing the Cape Cod Bay.  As all the beaches facing the bay, it is quite Unusual as compares to the Usual sand beaches, such as those on the south side of Cape Cod.  When the tide goes out, the sand flat can stretch for miles out into the bay.    Various birds come in to feed on this sand flat.

This Laughing Gull is quite Unusual.  Unlike the Usual laughing gulls that group together far away on the sand flat, this one mixed with all the other usual sea gulls and come close by to the beach goers. I was able to get really close to it.  Look at its Unusual red beak, it is the Usual sign of this bird in the breeding season.

Laughing Gull has an Unusual media exposure this past week.  The picture of a completely oil-covered Laughing Gull from the Gulf Coast was shown on the TV, newspaper and internet all over the world.  It dived into the ocean covered with oil leaked from the damaged BP  deep sea oil well.  Luckily it was rescued.  I am happy that our Laughing Gulls on Cape Cod are still soaring high in the sky.

Well, this is just another one of the Usual sea gulls picking on a crab from the sand flat.  But, exactly what sea gull is it?  Look at the Unusually beautiful pink legs, it is a young Herring Gull!

Here is the Usual adult Herring Gull that we often see.  Click on the photo to enlarge it to see the Unusually blood-shot eye.  It is the breeding season for it also and the red orbital ring around the eye is the Usual sign of a breeding adult bird.

Anything is Unusual of this Gray Catbird?  Nothing except I usually only see them up on the tree branch and they do not let me get too close.  This one came very close to me on the picnic table while I was having my fish 'n' chips at Kate's Seafood at Brewster, the next town from Dennis.  Does the Catbird eat fish also like a cat?

What an Unusually beautiful scene looking out from Kate's Seafood!  The field was covered with wild flowers.  Kate's Seafood is such a local institution, people travel miles to sample its fried seafood and ice cream.

This is another bird came near me at Kate's Seafood.  It is the Usual House Sparrow. Its Unusual black face and breast caught my attention.  It is the Usual sign of an adult breeding male.  The Unusual thing of this little bird is that it is like all the Usual American, it is an immigrant.  It was introduced to New York in 1850.  By 1910, it has spread to California.  It is the most widely distributed wild bird on earth.

After the Usual satisfying lunch at Kate's, I went to have a walk on the John Wing Trail to the Wing Island in the Cape Cod Natural History Museum at Brewster.  As much as I like about the sand flat of Cape Cod Bay, if you are a summer tourist, it is almost impossible to get to.  All the beaches need a local town sticker for parking.  The Unusual thing of this trail is you can park at the museum then take a walk on the trail which takes you to the beach and sand flat of Wing Island, no parking sticker needed!

Next to the museum is the Old Higgin's Farm Windmill.  It is over 200 years old and has been meticulously restored.  I did some trick on the computer to make it look a little bit Unusual!!

One more Unusual event happened on that day, I now have officially taken over 10,000 pictures with my Nikon D700.  It restarted counting from 0001.

This is an UnUsUally long blog than we UsUally have.  Hope you have enjoyed following me on this trip.  To see more entries of ABC Wednesday click here.


Sylvia K said...

UnUsUal in length perhaps, but as UsUal an interesting post for the U day! And terrific photos of some UniqUe birds. Have a great week!


Manang Kim said...

Unusual but nice to look at. I like the red beak that laughing gull, cute! Happy Wednesday!

ABC Wednesday~U

Mara said...

Love the red beak on the Laughing Gull, love the bird of prey. Congratulations on all those photos taken with your camera and looking forward to seeing many more!

Amy said...

Thanks for taking us along - it was fun to see the birds and the great scenery around Kate's!

photowannabe said...

A totally delightful unusual blog. I liked how you used the words usual and unusual.
Your photo of the catbird is a real winner, and i love the technique you used on the windmill.
Excellent post Bradley.

Roger Owen Green said...

understandable that you'd be so loquacious.

usual great post.

On behalf of the ABC Wednesday team, thank you! - ROG

Tumblewords: said...

An unusually fine trip. The laughing gull was very interesting and the processed windmill photo is so unusual. Great for U!

Paula Scott said...

I love the windmill-and the informative post on UnUsUal (and all things unusual)!

Gayle said...

Wow. I'm amazed you can identify and know so much about the birds. Facinating post.

ChrisJ said...

Wonderful photographs and commentary.
I like the sea birds and the windmill especially.

Jay said...

What a fun post! I learned some things about gulls, and even about the common sparrow. I knew that they were found all over the globe, but not that they were THE most widely distributed, nor the date when they were introduced to New York, of course.

I saw the picture of the poor Laughing Gull, all mired with oil. :(

Ann said...

Our common gull is also your usual adult Herring Gull. We also have a big brownish one. They are often together.

anjanvarde said...

You are really lucky to catch actions of the birds i your camera. I envy you for both your photography and time you spare in your schedule.

Jingle said...

very creative and fun u post!

Anna said...

Lovely bird-photos!
Happy Weekend!

Anna's U-words

Anna said...

Yep! I see that I did leave a small comment on your blog! Very small, for such a nice post that you wrote. I can understand that you have taken, what was it? 10.000 photos? "Practice makes perfect" is the old saying, and you have ceratinly learned your craft. I haven't taken that many digital-pics, since I only have owned my Nikon D60 for a little less than a year now. I have only taken about a thousand pictures with it. Lots of jewellery-pic for my online stores.
As I mentioned before, I love your bird photos. But now I even have read about the windmill. Lovely image too.
Hope your trip back to Taiwan will be a safe one.
Best wishes,
For the benefit of other readers:
Anna's U-words

shu said...

Love the Catbird and enjoy the Usuals and Unusuals of your outings


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