Sweetwater with friends

It was a beautiful day, so when Eric, Katy and Deedra stopped
by the gallery to say howdy and told me that they were on their
way to spend the day photographing, I jumped at the
opportunity to join them.

The raw facts of life have been grinding away at my soul. I feel
my gentle senses have become muted & I long to look upon
the world again with an innocent heart. The invitation to go
out into the woods and gaze upon the quiet beauty of the
earth is as though Katy offered me a life preserver!

Clyde wasn’t able to join us because he was on his way to
Key West with Elam Stoltzfus for an opening of his work
with the film “Living Waters – the Aquatic Preserves of Florida”.

Katy and Deedra walking along Loop Road.

Gator along the edge of Sweetwater

Looking down Sweetwater River


Ibis flying toward tree…

Ready to land….

The Ibis finally landed safe and sound…


The forest here is usually under water,
but today it had this lush green carpet.
It looked so wonderful I felt like laying
down and relaxing….however, the ground
may look dry, but it is wet.

Katy and Niki photographing

Katy, Deedra and Niki on bridge with Sweetwater
flowing underneath.This is a great location for photographing birds,
however the seasonfor good bird photography is just about over
…time for both the snowbirds
and the real birds to fly north…

Deedra and Niki on the edge of the road photographing birds…
AND Katy & Eric!

This heron was being so picturesque!

Katy and Eric making their way through the edges of Sweetwater.
Every spring the swamps begin their seasonal drying, so Katy
and Eric are walking on dry land. Normally, the water would
be up to their waist!

A couple of young Ibis
There were birds everywhere.
It was so much fun to photograph them.

Katy sneaking around a corner

Eric in the bushes photographing

We decided to have lunch along the edge
of the bridge while watching birds. Katy sat
down in one of the chairs and it fell apart…not
due to Katy, but due to the cheap construction
of the chair. It was certainly a surprise to Katy!

We were all laughing so hard it made it
impossible for Katy to get out of the chair!

After the experience with the chair,
we retreated to the back of the pick-up for lunch!

All day we kept looking for a Swallow Tail Kite and just
as we got ready to leave a beautiful Swallow
Tail Kite soared overhead. We were “Tracking Desire”
…Oh…that is in reference to one of the best books I
have ever read. The title of the book is
Tracking Desire by Susan Cerulean.
The book is beautifully written prose about her love affair
with the Swallow Tail Kite. VERY GOOD BOOK!

Photos by
Niki Butcher
Katy Raits
Eric Raits
Deedra Ludwig – DeedraLudwig.com

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