Category Archives: Photo Challenges

Some Hawaii wildlife

A palila sits in a tree in Hawaii

This week’s Sunday Stills challenge theme is ‘Wildlife.’ See more responses here. I thought I’d go with a couple of photos from the air, on land, and in the ocean.

First up, a couple of native Hawaiian birds, a palila above and a pueo below.

A pueo sits on a post in Hawaii
Wild goats rest on a trail in Hawaii

Next, a group of goats blocking a trail in South Kona, above, and a wild pig snaffles a mango and runs off with its prize, below.

A wild pig runs off with a mango in Hawaii
Spinner dolphins in the waters off Hawaii

Finally, a pod of spinner dolphins that I encountered in the wild while snorkeling. This scene was made more poignant for me by having recently seen dolphins in a small pool doing their thing for tourists at one of the resorts here. I couldn’t bring myself to take a photo of that.

Spinner dolphins in the waters off Hawaii

It’s bright, it’s white, it’s Sunday Stills

Surf rushes ashore at Upolu, Hawaii
A cattle egret waits in a fountain
The turbines of Hawi wind farm with Mauna Kea in the background

This week’s Sunday Stills challenge theme is ‘White.’ See more responses here.

In the top photo, frothy surf barrels ashore at Upolu in North Kohala. Below that, a cattle egret surveys the scene in the middle of a water fountain. The third photo shows turbines at Hawi Wind Farm against a backdrop of snowy Mauna Kea. And the bottom photo features a bee collecting on a Maiapilo flower.

A bee forages on a Maiapilo flower

The future’s so bright

A lion statue with a air of sunglasses

This week’s Sunday Stills challenge theme is ‘Future.’ See more responses here. While I rummaged around for ideas, the song ‘The Future’s So Bright, I Gotta Wear Shades’ by Timbuk 3 played in my head (link). So I thought I might as well go with that.

I had planned on featuring an array of sunglasses I have, but then I forgot to take them with me when I went to take photos. Besides, I discovered I no longer have the pair of red ‘Deathwish’ sunglasses I found several years ago, so my heart wasn’t in that project.

Instead, here’s a very upbeat lion enjoying a day on the South Kohala coast.

A look back at 2021

A Hawaiian monk seal resting
January: Hiwahiwa, a male Hawaiian Monk Seal born in 2020, rests at Upolu. Haven’t seen any monk seals since this encounter. (Link)

This week’s Sunday Stills challenge theme is ‘2021 in Your Rear-View Mirror.’ See more responses here. I’ve gone with a favorite photo from each month of 2021, with a caption and link to the post the photo first appeared in.

Wainanali’i lagoon at Kiholo, Hawaii at Kiholo, Hawaii
February: I love hiking at Kiholo Bay. There’s plenty to see and shady spots to rest awhile. (Link)
Spinner dolphins in the waters off the Big Island, Hawaii
March: Swimming with dolphins! Need I say more. (Link)
An I'iwi calls in a forest off Saddle Road, Hawaii
April: Another favorite hike, on Pu’u O’o Trail off Saddle Road, and an endemic I’iwi singing its heart out. (Link)
Close up of a coastal manta ray approaching
May: This inquisitive Manta Ray kept returning, probably wondering how something so clumsy-looking could survive in the water. (Link)
A Roseate Skimmer Dragonfly perched on a twig
June: I like seeing little creatures, such as this Roseate Skimmer Dragonfly, and I’m thrilled when the photos turn out. (Link)
Three palm trees in Hawaii
July: I like palm trees and word play so this was too tempting to pass up for Becky’s Tree Squares. (Link)
A school of mackerel scads, or Opelus being hunted by a rainbow runner off Hawaii
August: An instant in the water – a school of Mackeral Scads chased by a Rainbow Runner. They went by in a matter of seconds. (Link)
Red-masked parakeets at Kohanaiki Beach Park.
September: These Red-Masked Parakeets are not native, but they’re oh so tropical. (Link)
Early morning lights at the port of Kawaihae, Hawaii
October: When I have time, on my way to work, I stop at Kawaihae. I might see anything from a glorious sunrise, to a tiny crab on the beach, to these port lights. (Link)
The lava cone and lake at Kilauea Volcano in late 2021
November: Kilauea erupted again so I had to go look. The eruption is still going, but a little erratically these days. (Link)
A Green turtle, with a slender remora on its shell, checks out the photographer
December: A recent encounter and maybe my favorite Hawaiian Green Turtle photo. (Link)

A green turtle says hello

A Green turtle, with a slender remora on its shell, checks out the photographer

I was snorkeling yesterday, when I looked up and saw this green turtle coming towards me. It was near the surface and heading up so I thought it might be about to take a breath. Instead, the turtle, which was quite small, leveled off and kept coming my way.

Usually, in the water, I have a bit of zoom on my camera since that’s often needed. In this instance, I zoomed out and found myself leaning back to keep the turtle in the image. It came within a foot of me and I thought we were going to butt heads, but at the last moment it stopped, veered, then swooped down and away.

It wasn’t until I got home and processed my photos that I noticed the slender remora on the turtle’s shell, behind its head. Remoras, which don’t harm their hosts, attach themselves by means of a sucker disk on their heads, so what can be seen on this turtle is the underside of the fish.

I don’t change my desktop image often, but the top photo makes me so happy I popped it up immediately, so I’m posting it in response to Clare’s monthly Share Your Desktop challenge (see more responses here).

A green turtle swims by

Abstracts: Wheel

A close up of an auto wheel

This week’s Sunday Stills challenge theme is ‘Metallic.’ See more responses here.

I’m not much of a car person. I like vehicles that are comfortable and reasonable to run. But mostly I look for reliability. But I know many people are really into cars.

Here on the island, we have lifted and lowered vehicles, cars with spoilers and go-faster stripes and other strange accessories. Tricked-out Honda Civics seem to be popular, but at the end of the day they’re still Civics, not Ferraris.

Wheels are popular spots for expression. I still think of hubcaps as round bits of shiny metal covering the wheel nuts, but those days are long gone. Hubcaps, or whatever they’re called these days, can be anything. The wheel in the photo had a jazzy, offset spiral thing going on. The irony is that many of these shiny, metallic pieces of auto art are not metal at all, but plastic wannabes.

Silent night

The lights of Kawaihae brighten a dark night in Hawaii

This week’s Sunday Stills challenge theme is ‘Christmas Song Lyrics.’ See more responses here.

I’m one of those people who sings, hums, and whistles Christmas songs year-round, often to the annoyance of those in earshot. Spoiled for choice, I decided to go with Silent Night with the intention of taking photos of Hawaii’s star-spangled night sky. However, by the time I got around to taking photos, the stars had been blanketed by clouds. These came from a weather system that prompted warnings of blizzard conditions and 100 mph winds!

Such conditions weren’t expected where I live – that would represent climate change of biblical proportions – but the weather system generated clouds and rain island-wide. In addition, it seemed to swirl back and forth and around the Big Island maintaining these conditions for a week and counting.

This photo looks down on the lights of Kawaihae and I think the heavy clouds add a muffled feeling that’s quite in keeping with the song.