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JANUARY 1, 2011 (AKA 1/1/11!)
Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART, PO Box 7245  4041 Granada Drive, Indian Lake Estates, FL 33855.  Telephone: 863-692-0906.  Computer fax: 877- 265-6955
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Harlequin Duck drake in early morning light, Barnegat Jetty, NJ
Image copyright 2010: Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART
Canon EF 800mm f/5.6L IS lens with the 1.4XII TC and the EOS-1D MIV.  ISO 400.  Evaluative metering +1/3 stop: 1/320 sec. at f/8. 
To create this image, I followed Denise's early morning at the jetty on a clear day advice (from the Barnegat Jetty Site Guide).  Doing so put me in prefect position to make some good images while dealing with a difficult light angle.  
It is wonderful being a lover of what is (Byron Katie:  I just love that folks with $10,000+ worth of camera gear will take time off of work and spend a week's salary on traveling to a great place to photograph but will refuse to purchase the BIRDS AS ART Site Guide ($22-$50) for their chosen location.  Our Site Guides are designed to teach you everything that I know about a specific bird photography hotspot, hotspots that I have been visiting for ten to twenty years.  In short, they are like being on an IPT without having me there.  Heck, some folks see that as a big plus.... 
In any case, a few weeks back in a post on BPN, a member mentioned that he would be making his first trip to Bosque.  Never being shy about marketing, I suggested that he get a copy of your "Bosque Site Guide."  He responded, "No need.  I have been doing lots of research on line with other photographers.  I'll be fine."   I came back and said, "Good luck.  You would be much better off with your guide than with your research.  I have been visiting Bosque for 16 years and I hold nothing back."  And that was the end of the conversation.
Two weeks later I see another photographer post a very nice "fire in the mist" image from Bosque.   He says, "I did just what Artie said to to in his Site Guide.  We started here at dawn and the moved quickly after the blast off.   On the way past the small pond that Artie mentioned we noticed the ground fog just where he said it would be.  So we parked and waited a few minutes for the sun to crack its way over the ridge.  Bingo; it was as if someone tossed a lighted match on a pool of gasoline.  With the BAA Site Guide we would have driven right by it without stopping.  Five minutes later we were on our way to Artie's next recommended stop to enjoy some great Sandhill Crane flight photography.:

Now the first guy comes back and posts that the second guy was "really lucky" to get fire in the mist. He writes that he was there for a whole week and never saw any fire in the mist.  So I shot back, "He was not lucky; he was smart.  He bought our Bosque Site Guide, studied it, did what it said, and found tons of great opps including the one that everyone thirsts for."  Just as I planned it.... 
I spent two morning with Denise Ippolito at the Barnegat Jetty.   Yesterday morning, two photographers who obviously did not have Denise's Barnegat Jetty Site Guide, came walking up the jetty right into the rising sun.  The only problem was that there was a big flock of Dunlin parked right in the middle of the jetty.  They hemmed and hawed for a while and finally realized that they could not get past the flock without flushing it,  They made a U-turn, walked back 200 yards to a spot where they could get off the jetty safely, and then had to walk an additional 500 yards to get back up on the jetty.  So not only did they miss some great shorebird photography they missed the sweetest light.   If either of them had purchased the site guide and read it, they would have know exactly what to do and could have enjoyed some great photography instead of wasting half the morning.....
As I say often, "You gotta love it."
ps:  I hope that everyone has a happy, healthy, productive 2011 filled with travel to wondrous places and lots of wonderful images.
Harlequin Duck hen on rock in early morning light, Barnegat Jetty, NJ
Image copyright 2010: Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART
Canon EF 800mm f/5.6L IS lens with the 1.4XII TC and the EOS-1D MIV.  ISO 400: 1/160 sec. at f/8 set manually after histogram check.
More of the same; great advice that puts you in position to make great images. 
Though I lived in the New York/New Jersey metropolitan area for nearly two decades as a birder and bird photographer (and for 46 years in all), I never made it to the famed Barnegat Jetty until last December (2009). Why famous? It is the best place in the Northeast to view and photograph a variety of sea ducks and wintering shorebirds most noticeably Harlequin Duck and Purple Sandpiper. When I got there, a 26″ snow storm sent me running back to my Mom’s home in Holbrook, Long Island, leaving the motel in Ship Bottom at 3am to drive through the storm. Yikes! I returned a week later and with Denise Ippolito as my guide created many wonderful images.  The jetty is very long. And can be very dangerous. Denise, who spends many days each winter season on the jetty, knew right where the birds would be, took me right to them, and gave me more than a few tips on how to avoid killing myself
Denise Ippolito has written a fabulous Site Guide for the Barnegat Jetty. (I helped out just a bit.)  The Barnegat Jetty Site Guide will help to ensure that your very first visit to this great bird photography location is both productive and safe. Denise explains the effects of the winds and the tides and the light on the photographic opportunities. She lets you know what birds you will find there and where and when you will find them. She shares her favorite conditions and her tricks for getting close. And she will keep you safe while you are there, the same way she kept me safe.  A good portion of the guide deals with safety issues.  Kudos to Denise for a job well done.
The Barnegat Site Guide (6190 words, 68 images) is available from BIRDS AS ART by e-mail as a PDF for only $22. You can call Jim with a credit card in hand at 863-221-2372, send us a Paypal to, or purchase it through the store here.  
Just for the record book, Barnegat is located on Long Beach Island less than 30 minutes from Manahawkin, NJ.
Long-tailed Duck hen swimming, Barnegat Jetty, NJ
Image copyright 2010: Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART
Canon EF 800mm f/5.6L IS lens with the 1.4XII TC and the EOS-1D MIV.  ISO 400.  Evaluative metering +1/3 stop: 1/640 sec. at f/8. 
Apparently this duck had read the Barnegat Site Guide as it did just what  Denise writes that this species does characteristically. 
The just updated and annotated Complete Bosque Site Guide (191 pages, 20673 words, 160 photographs) and the Bosque 2010 Site Guide Update Only were sent two weeks ago (in separate e-mails) to all who have previously purchased the guide (updates are free for life).  Feel free to e-mail us if you have a new e-mail address or if you did not receive your updated PDFs.  And please let us know how you paid.   
New folks can purchase the Complete Bosque Site Guide for $50 by calling Jim at 863-692-0906 with credit card in hand, by sending us a Paypal for $50 to, or by clicking here.  Your purchase will of course include the 2010 Update Only and free updates each year that I visit Bosque.
The Complete Bosque Site Guide is just what it says.  Complete.  While many of the areas covered in the Complete Guide did not hold birds in 2010, there is a likelihood that many of these spots will be productive in future years.  And as above, the Complete Guide includes free updates.
The Bosque 2010 Site Guide Update Only was written as a stand-alone work.  If you will be visiting Bosque this year you can purchase the 2010 Update Only (5779 words and 74 great new images, all with our legendary educational captions) for only $25.  And you will know where to be on what wind in what light and when.  And why.  You can purchase the Bosque 2010 Site Guide Update Only for $25 by calling Jim at 863-692-0906 with credit card in hand, by sending us a Paypal for $50 to, or by clicking here. You will be getting the nearly complete Bosque course for half price.  It's the next best thing to being on an IPT.  Be sure to save a copy of the e-mail that you receive from us after purchasing and keep a record of how you paid.  It is likely that after reading the 2010 Update Only you will want to up-grade to the Complete Guide for $25.  In the meantime the more economical Bosque 2010 Site Guide Update Only will have you up to speed for a 2010/2011 winter visit.  
Great Cormorant, first winter, Barnegat Jetty, NJ
Image copyright 2010: Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART
Canon EF 800mm f/5.6L IS lens with the 1.4X II TC and the EOS-1D MIV.  ISO 400.  Evaluative metering +1/3 stop: 1/250 sec. at f/9.   
This is a rare to uncommon winter visitor to New Jersey.   At point blank range it is best to go for a bit of extra d-o-f as I did here (working at f/9 rather than wide open at f/8.)  
Below is the gear that I used to create the images that you see in this this Bulletin.  Thanks a stack to all who have used the Shopper’s Guide links to purchase their gear as a thank you for all the free information that we bring you on the Blog and in the Bulletins.
Canon 800mm f/5.L IS lens (My very best friend Smile emoticon)
Canon EOS-1D Mark IV professional digital camera body (I only own and travel with two.)
Canon EF 1.4X II teleconverter  (I never leave home without at least two of these.)
And from the BAA On-line Store: 
Gitzo 3530 LS Tripod  (Sturdy and light and will last you a lifetime.)
Mongoose M3.6 Tripod Head  (I use it every day with my 800mm.)
Double Bubble Spirit Level   (Make your life easy by getting it right in the field; just a glance and you are square to the world.)
Delkin e-Film Pro 32 gb Compact Flash Card   (Fast and dependable.  Everything I want in a flash card.)
If you are considering the purchase of a major piece of photographic gear be it a new camera, a long lens, a tripod or a head, or some accessories be sure to check out our complete Shopper's Guide.  You will learn to find the lowest prices, comparison shop, and help us to keep offering tons of great free info and images. 
Black-billed Plover, winter plumage, Barnegat Jetty, NJ
Image copyright 2010: Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART
Canon EF 800mm f/5.6L IS lens with the EOS-1D MIV.  ISO 400.  Evaluative metering +2/3 stop: 1/320 sec. at f/10.  
Birds teed up on the edge of the rocks make the very best subjects.  This is an afternoon image.  
SAN DIEGO IPT: JAN 19-23, 2011.  Slide program on the evening of JAN 18.   5 Full Days: $2399 (Limit 8/sold Out).  Co-leaders Tim Grey and Todd Gustafson.   Brown Pelicans in spectacular breeding plumage with their bright red bill pouches, Wood and Ring-necked Ducks, Lesser Scaup, Western, California, and Heerman's Gulls, Marbled Godwit, and lots, lots more.  Please see terms and deposit info below.  
SW FLA IPT: FEB  9-14, 2011.  Slide program on the evening of FEB 8. 6 Full Days: 2899.  (Limit 10/openings 2).  Escape winter's icy grip to enjoy a wide array of Florida's tame birds: herons, egrets, Wood Stork, shorebirds, gulls, terns, skimmers, raptors, and more.  Please see terms and deposit info below. 
BOSQUE del APACHE 2011 IPT: “The Complete Bosque Experience.” NOV 19-25, 2011.  Slide program on the evening of Friday, NOV 18.  7-FULL DAYS:  $3299.  (Non-refundable deposit: $500; see details below.) Limit: 10/Openings: 8. Co-leaders: Robert O'Toole & Jim Heupel.  Geese, cranes, ducks, sunrises, sunsets, and blast-offs.  Live, eat, and breathe photography with one of (if not the) world's premier photographic educators at one of his very favorite locations on the planet.  Plus great co-leaders and top-notch Photoshop instruction. Please see terms and deposit info immediately below. 
With my ever-shrinking teaching schedule and all but this spring's SW Florida IPT sold out, this trip may well represent a rare opportunity to learn from the best, so do not wait too long before sending your deposit.  Clemens van der Werf who was on this year's Bosque trip is already registered for next year.  If you missed the Photographer Experience Quiz and the Mystery Photographer & Experience Level Revealed! posts on the blog, you will surely want to check them out to see what Clemens has accomplished in less than a single year of bird photography. And how! 
Terms and deposit info:  
A non-refundable deposit of $500 is required to hold a spot on the above IPTs. Deposits may be paid by check, PayPal, or credit card.  Payment in full (by check or money order only) is due five months before the start of each trip and is non-refundable unless the IPT sells out.  You will be required to sign a statement of understanding to this effect. Travel insurance is of course highly recommended.  Travel Insurance Services offers a variety of plans and options.  Included with the Elite Option or available as an upgrade to the Basic & Plus Options is Cancel for Any Reason Coverage that expands the list of reasons for your canceling to an infinite list from a sudden work or family obligation to a simple change of mind.  My family and I use and depend on the great policies offered by TIS whenever we travel.  You can learn more here.   Do note that many plans require that you purchase your travel insurance within 14 days of our cashing your deposit check or running your credit card.  Travel insurance protects you against unexpected developments, injuries, or illnesses.  We regret that we must implement this policy but we have been plagued by last minute cancellations that make it impossible for others to participate and deprive us of essential income.  Please consider your schedule and your work and family obligations carefully before plunking down your deposit.  
Important note: please print, fill out, and sign the registration and release forms and include them with your deposit check (made out to "Arthur Morris." )  If you use a credit card to register, please fill out, sign, and mail the forms asap.  Your registration will not be complete until we receive your paper work.  You can find the forms here.    
GREECE/DALMATIAN PELICAN EXPLORATORY IPT.  FEB 27-MAR 5, 2011. 6 1/2+ Full Days of Photography: $2499.  (Limit: 6/openings 1). Co-leaders: Arthur Morris, Robert O'Toole, and Yannis Arvanitis as our bi-lingual guide.  Payment in full is due immediately.  Please call to hold a spot pending the arrival of your check made out to "Arthur Morris."  Europeans please e-mail for wire transfer details.  No discounts.  For images and complete information click here.  If you would like additional info on Lake Kerkini please e-mail me at and request same. 

GALAPAGOS 2011 PHOTO-CRUISE OF A LIFETIME IPT/The Complete Galapagos Photographic Experience: July 3-20, 2011 (July 5-19, 2011 on the boat): 13 1/2 days of photography plus a last morning panga ride: $12, 499. (Limit 11/sold out.) 

If you would like your name placed on the seriously interested list for the SUMMER 2012 trip, please e-mail me at

Best and great picture-making, 
Note: Arthur Morris has been a paid Canon contract photographer, part of the Explorers of Light program, since 1996 and continues in that role today.  Hunt's Photo of Boston, MA is a BAA sponsor as is Delkin Devices.