Dark Eyed Junco, IMG_6775

Dark Eyed Junco birds, a genus of small grayish American sparrows. are very popular in the Clingmans Dome area. Adults generally have gray heads, necks, and breasts, gray or brown backs and wings, and a white belly, but show a confusing amount of variation in plumage details. The white outer tail feathers flash distinctively in flight and while hopping on the ground. The bill is usually pale pinkish.

Dark Eyed Junco, IMG_6775-2

Dark Eyed Junco, IMG_6775

Cedar Waxing Bird at Clingmans Dome, IMG_6809

Cedar waxing bird is a species I have been trying to capture fro a long time.  I was happy to spot it.  Unfortunately, he was perched too far for a better look.  It is a medium-sized, mostly brown, gray, and yellow bird named for its wax-like wing tips. Such a beauty.

Cedar Waxing Bird at Clingmans Dome , IMG_6809-2

Cedar Waxing Bird at Clingmans Dome , IMG_6809

Black Bear and Cub_93E0141

And that’s when it suddenly happened.  While slowly driving, and with my eagle-eye vision (I can’t believe I’m saying that while I am waiting for cataract surgery) I notice a movement in the weeds and from a distance.  I post that first shot without cropping so you can have an idea of the distance and focus on the middle of the picture for a black spot.  I was using at that time my Canon 70-200mm Lens.

Black Bear and Cub_93E0141-1

That black spot was this magnificent mother bear.  My joy… can’t be described. You get the picture.  I had time to switch to my 100-400mm Lens for a closer shot and that I got.

Black Bear and Cub_93E0141-2

Black Bear and Cub_93E0141-3

Black Bear and Cub_93E0141-4

Black Bear and Cub_93E0141-5

Black Bear and Cub_93E0141-6

And this site is beyond the joy I felt when I saw Mom.  But there was more surprises along the way.

Black Bear and Cub_93E0141-7