I retired along with my husband, Ron Reeder, from a career in science to pursue photography. My many years of studying and watching birds took its natural course in photographing them. Digital camera systems made it easier to do so. I am currently using a Nikon D300 and an 80-400mm lens with a vibration stabilizer that allows a handheld camera.

After moving to Mercer Island, WA in 1992, I began to make a weekly tally of the birds that I saw in my yard. If they stopped for a seed, flew through, stayed to build a nest, or bathed in our watercourse, they got counted. To date, our tally numbers 85 species of birds. Many of these birds I have photographed, and some of their portraits you see on the walls of the Chamber of Commerce. It is important to me to try to capture not only an identification photo, but include something of their nature, habitat, and habits. Many birds are sexually dimorphic—such plumage differences are easily seen with the Anna’s Hummingbirds. We observe that young fledglings need several weeks to assume the fully mature look of their parents. One example is the young Pileated Woodpecker with its pink head that will grow into a vivid red. We treasure the fact that adult birds will bring their young to our feeders of black oil sunflower seeds and suet. Whole families of Golden-crowned Kinglets will bathe together. The yard is alive with song, action, and sometimes drama. Yes, even the Cooper’s Hawk must survive by feeding on small birds. My husband, Ron, and I feel that our lives have been greatly enriched by watching birds. We encourage them to feed, and nest in our yard. Ultimately, some will die whether from natural, or unnatural causes. These too, we find in our yard. We marvel at the beauty of their skeletons and feathers left behind.