Baby Guaiabero Parrot

A little boy came by my house with a little surprise. His brother had given him a baby bird that fell out the Mango Tree near his house. It wasn’t injured so it must not have fell far. I offered to buy it from him but he refused to sell. I told him it eats fruits like Guava’s.  He said they were feeding it banana. That’s OK too.

It’s a baby male Guaiabero Parrot. The female has yellow mixed in the feathers and the males blue. On the tips of the developing feathers around his body you can see a few small bits of blue. I shared photos of a matured female a few months ago on a post. 

I need to diet more….

Lucky kid. 
David Lee Martin


Harvesting The Rice

This morning when I woke up and started moving about the house I took a look out the window as usual. I just love seeing nature and this peaceful country side. The province life of the Philippines is so much better and healthier than being in the polluted concrete jungle called Manila. 

I noticed my neighbors were working the rice pad’s.  They are cutting it, stacking for drying, and separating the rice from the plant. It’s not easy work as light as rice seems. It’s a lot of bending over, swinging a blade, stacking, and being under direct sun. For me, if I was doing it, I am sure my back would be killing me.

Rice stacked for drying
Neighbours in the rice paddy

From an upper view the stack of rice looks similar to the shape of a doughnut. The rice that isn’t quite ready remains uncut as seen near the stack. 

Breaking for a moment
Burnt straw

Later they will burn the straw from the rice to return some of the nutrients back into the soil. 

When all the rice is gathered they will separate it under improvised shade made of palm leaves.

Separating the rice under improvised shade

Later they will lay it out again on tarpaulins for the rice to continue hardening in the husk. Some will be saved for seed and the rest will go to the mill and the rice grains will be separated from the husk. This is the Provincial farmers life.

Photos were taken with a Canon EOS 1200D with a Sigma 70-300mm f4-5.6 APO DG MACRO zoom lens with hood. No editing or filters were used other than name and data stamp.

Thanks for reading my blog and viewing my photos. Please follow me here and on Instagram @david_lee_martin. 
David Lee Martin

Functional US Army Veteran

What is Wildlife Photography?

This is a bit of a rant I guess. I follow photographers on Instagram and on Twitter. I enjoy seeing the work’s of other photographers; the places they go and what they get to experience. I am jealous sometimes, I admit it. 

Eurasian Tree Sparrow, free as a bird 😉

When I observe the post I also look at locations and tags. I have a pet peeve. That is how people tag their images. A bird in an aviary or cage is NOT wildlife. An animal in a zoo is NOT wildlife. It is in captivity. It is imprisoned by walls, screens, netting, and glass. Most are bred into this and have never known the freedom’s of wide open spaces. 
So what is wildlife photography to me? To me wildlife photography is the ability to capture a photo of an animal in its natural habitat. No barriers or restrictions. Where they can run, fly, or swim as far as they want. Doing what they do best without the influence or restrictions of man. 

I don’t have a problem with those who bait birds with seeds and such as long as they aren’t trapping them. You are actually helping the birds sometimes with feeders and baths. 

What set this off was a tweet. A man posted a photo of a couple beautiful parrots a while ago perched on a “T” post with meshing in the background; obviously an aviary. One of the tags he used was #wildlifephotography. I was very annoyed by that. At one time maybe. But in this case no longer. Just because the animal can be found in the wild does not mean that a photo in a zoo or aviary is wildlife. In most cases it is domesticated and lost its fear of humans and natural instincts. 

Rant over. What do you define as wildlife photography? Are you using hash tags? 

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As always, thanks for following, reading, and viewing. Yesterday was my one year anniversary here on WordPress. Thanks to all those who read and those who give me feedback. God Bless all.

David Lee Martin

Functional US Army Veteran.

April Flower’s 

I thought I would share some shots of flowers I took this month here in the Philippines. Most of the shots are Macro.

Photo taken with Pentax Model X-5

Photo take with Samsung Galaxy Note 4 mobile phone

Photo taken with a Canon EOS 1200D with a Sigma 70-300mm 4-5.6 APO DG Macro lens
Photo taken with a Canon EOS 1200D with a Sigma 70-300mm 4-5.6 APO DG Macro lens
Photo taken with a Pentax Model X-5

When I get bored I sometimes grab the Camera or what’s always handy, the mobile, and just go for a walk. If I see something of interest that I like I take a photo of it. Living in the Philippines has been at an advantage for seeing a lot of beautiful scenery, flowers, nature, and wildlife. It’s a great place for photographers of many genres. I am still an Amateur photographer and I feel I am improving. I watch “how to” videos and observe the work of other photographers so I can have an Idea of what I want to get out of my shots. I been doing wildlife, macro, and landscapes. Soon I hope to get some portrait practice in that goes beyond selfies.  I dont use photo shop. I use a phone app to pute my name on the pictures. Let me know what you think. I am always open to constructive criticism.

As always, thanks for viewing and reading.

Follow me on Instagram: david_lee_martin
David Lee Martin

Functional US Army Veteran

Hopping the Caramoan Islands

Yesterday I went Island hopping with the wife and her relatives. I had a good time and took some photos. I also got toasted by the sun. I get an allergic reaction to most creams and lotions. So trusting a sunblock is hard. Sucks when you feel the aftermath. 

Here are some images from our day on the Caramoan Islands. We started in Barangay Tabgon, Part of the Caramoan municipality in Caramoan, Camarines Sur,  Bicol, Philippines. 

Barangay Tabgon Port

Our mode of transportation were the Bangka style boats. They are narrow boats with outriggers for ballance support. 

The Leading Bangka Boat

Our first destination was Manlawi Sand bar and beach. There they had floating platforms for resting in the shade and eating. There were also local vendors there to sell snacks, drinks, and souvenirs. The wife and I bought two large conch shells. 

Floating Rest Platforms at Manlawi Sand Bar
Friendly Vendors at Manlawi Sand Bar
My wife Kristine on the Sand Bar after the tide went out.

There is a lot of beautiful wildlife and sealife here. I seen many fish and starfish of different colors. 

Small Starfish

Manlawi Beach and Mangroves

From Manlawi we travelled to Sabitang Laya. It’s a nice Island with two long beautiful beaches. The tide was low and in the tide pools and flat areas you could see a lot of sealife. The producers of Survivor also like to use this island in its show. Many countries have done their survivor series here. The US did twice. 

One of the many colorful fish around the Caramoan Islands
Yours truly holding a pair of large starfish

This is an excellent location for snorkeling and under water photography. I have yet to buy myself an underwater camera. Soon… I keep telling myself. 

Living coral attached to a rock
One of the Sabitang Laya beaches

One thing that amazed me is that you can see the peak to the Mayon Volcano. The volcano is on the opposite side of the bay, on the other side of the Caramoan Penninsula. It’s much taller than I thought. You can see it in the center of the Sabitang Laya beach photo. 

The last Island we stopped at was Haponan Island. Didn’t take any photos there. A local is building some nice cottages there. I imagine I will visit there again to show those. We waited there for about 2 hours until the tide returned. When the tide is out the boats cannot return to Tabgon Port because it is too shallow. 

If you like to see more photos please follow me on Instagram: david_lee_martin

As always, Thanks for viewing and reading. 

David Lee Martin

Functional US Army Veteran

The Assassin

This morning I was sitting at my laptop when I noticed something move on the wall out of the corner of my eye. It was a unique looking reddish-orange bug with a black head and a black patch near it’s end and a long snout. I watched it crawl down the wall about a foot where it stopped to observe some Ants scouting about. About 10 seconds later it pounced the ant! Predator, how cool is that! 

So after a bit of research with Google I found it. It’s actually called an Assassin bug. Latin: reduviidae vespers purpupeus. Seems legit to me. One guy commented on a site about how he leave’s them alone cause it reduces ants. Fair enough, I will let these guys live too.

I also found that in 1988 the Philippines postal service featured these guys on a one peso stamp. I guess they were well liked back then also. Go get ’em killer.

The Camera used is a Canon EOS 1200D with a Sigma lens 70-300mm F4-5.6 APO DG Macro with hood, no filters, macro on, and manual focus.

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David Lee Martin

Functional US Army Veteran.

My Greatest Phobia

Spiders Scare the hell out of me. Always have. I can tolerate the small wolf spiders and daddy long legs; but some…. help me lord if I see them. Rather help them because they are about to die. But today out of interest I pulled the Camera out, photographed one, and researched it. 

This spider is a, “Giant Huntsman Spider.” I found it this morning just after waking. I went to the restroom on the backside of the house and while standing there I just took a look up into the corner and there it was just staring at me.

I am surprised myself that I did not panic. Usually I freak out. I was not sure if it was alive or dead. So after I finished my morning business I stood up and I took a deep breath and blew really hard at it. It moved a little so I knew it was alive. Off I went to get the Camera.

I took a few shots of it. For that privilege I let him live. Today the Huntsman did not have to die.

What I learned from the wonderful search engine called Google is that they are mildly venomous towards humans. Not deadly. Diet mainly consists of insects and small lizards when bigger. When full sized they can have a spread up to 12 inches. This one was maybe 8 inches, not yet full grown. 

Camera used today is my Canon EOS 1200D with a Sigma Lens 70-300mm F4-5.6 APO DG Macro with hood to avoid glare from ceiling light. No filters were used. Photos taken in manual focus.

If you like my writing and photography you would like to assist me in improving my hobby. Please see the link I provide. As always, Thanks for viewing and reading.
David Lee Martin

Functional US Army Veteran.