Beyond the BackyardOrlando Wetlands Park

Sunrise at Orlando Wetlands Park

Finally!  A day off when it wasn’t raining!  So I dusted off my cameras and headed to photograph sunrise at Orlando Wetlands Park.  I got there just as the gate was being opened – perfect timing!  The sky was already lightening as I headed to one of my favorite sunrise spots.

Sunrise at Orlando Wetlands

It never fails.  We get beautiful wispy clouds every morning as the sun rises on the way to work.  But on the weekend when I’m in a pretty location, the sunrise never is as good!  On this morning, the clouds caught some of the sun’s fire, but the thick clouds on the horizon hid most of the actual sunrise.

Sunrise at Orlando Wetlands

I wasn’t the only one watching the sunrise.  The park was full of Black-bellied Whistling-Ducks, whose cheerful calls echoed throughout the wetlands.  They flew around in small flocks as the light got stronger.  Many of them were perched in the trees backlit by the rising sun.  I put a 2x teleconverter on The Beast  and got some silhouette shots.  At one point these two birds started to fuss, and one started to bite the other bird’s foot!  It reminded me of my cats when Whiskey sneaks in to steal Squirt’s breakfast.

Black-bellied Whistling Ducks

When the sun filled peeked out, it bathed the marsh in beautiful golden light.

Sunrise at Orlando Wetlands

Then I found a spot where I could position the sun behind a clump of trees.  I used a high f-stop number to make the sun’s beams render in a starburst pattern.  Then it started to get hot.  Very hot.  Did I mention that I’m looking forward to cooler temperatures? :)  and winter birds!

Sunrise at Orlando Wetlands

After the sun came up, I switched into bird photography mode.  You’ll see some of those photos in an upcoming blog post.  But a few minutes later, I turned around and saw all the marsh grasses bathed in beautiful golden light.  It was so pretty that I had to pull out the wide-angle one more time…

Sunrise at Orlando Wetlands

Up next – birds! :)

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