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Christmas Cardinals and Holiday Chipmunks by Todd Henson

Bright red male Northern Cardinal perched on bush with berries in the rain

The holidays are upon us and it’s almost Christmas, so this week I thought I’d share some images that feel like Christmas to me. Whether you celebrate Christmas, another holiday, or nothing at all, I hope you gain some enjoyment viewing these images.

The Northern Cardinal, above, was photographed in Huntley Meadows, a beautiful wetlands park in Virginia. Looking closely you can see small streaks formed by the light drizzle, and the raindrops forming on the berries. The colors were nice and saturated because of the rain, and I was fortunate there were some nice reds and greens in the background.

Carolina Chickadee hanging upside down from a pine coe

I really enjoyed watching this little Carolina Chickadee feeding on pine cones. It would hang from the bottom of the pine cone and pry pieces loose to eat, sometimes flapping it’s wings wildly to keep balance. Such a beautiful little bird.

Bright red male Northern Cardinal perched on a branch

Steller's Jay, with white eye brows, perched on a branch

The closeup of the male Northern Cardinal was created the same day as the one up top. The rain had stopped, at least for a while, and the very patient Cardinal perched close by, providing a nice profile image. The Steller’s Jay was photographed in Rocky Mountain National Park. I was on my way out of the park when I noticed some Elk along the edge of the trees. After getting out of my car I saw flashes of dark blue moving in the tree right in front of me. I was very fortunate the Jay came out into the light and perched for a brief moment on a branch, allowing me to create one image before it flew away.

Beautiful Blue Jay posing for a portrait on a branch

Burke Lake Park is another nice location, with a long trail around the lake. That is where I created the image of the Blue Jay perched on a branch. From this perspective there is just a bit of blue visible, but I like the pose and the poofy feathers along the sides of the Jay’s back.

Elk along the edge of the trees

And here are the Elk I mentioned earlier. There were at least two in the field just in front of the trees, eating grass. They were slowly moving their way back into the trees. You can just make out the second Elk in the trees to the left of the visible one. I like the pose of the main Elk, looking over it’s shoulder and munching on the grass.

A curious Least Chipmunk on a lichen covered rock

And, finally, here is a little Least Chipmunk perched atop a lichen covered rock in Rocky Mountain National Park. I found this little Chipmunk at a pull off. I had stopped to take a break and look around, when I noticed movement just beyond the car. That’s when I noticed the Chipmunk scurrying from rock to rock. It paused a couple times, long enough for me to create some images. I love how the tail is raised, and how it’s watching me as I watch and photograph it.

Thank you so much for visiting my website and sharing some of your time viewing my images and reading some of my ramblings. I hope you’ve felt a little of the excitement and joy I felt when creating these images, and viewing these beautiful creatures. And I hope you have a very Merry Christmas!