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Birds of Miramar Colima

Focus on Bird Photography
Miramar Colima Beach Resort Photography 
Resort photography capturing birds of Miramar Beach Colima birds
Brown Pelicans with gossamer grace glide effortlessly above Miramar Beach in Colima Mexico.

While on a photoshoot in in Mexico last month, I fell in love with the tropical birds of Miramar Colima. I was there for different reasons. My assignment was to focus on resort photography. And readers of this blog will see commercial resort shots in upcoming articles.

But this story is about how I got lured by birds.

I was sidetracked on the beaches of Miramar by elegance and winged grace. 

Club Santiago in Colima Mexico beach birds.
Miramar beach, Colima Mexico swimmer
Travel photography pelican
Diving pelicans hit the water at 40 MPH
Nature photography pelican prey.
In its own dive ring, pelican devours whole its prey.
Resort Miramar beach pelican photography
Previous image enlarged….. since we all are viewing on dinky phone screens
Birds of Miramar beach Colima Club Santiago Mexico
Mexico bird photography is extensive at Vida Del Mar Colima
A Yellow Winged Cacique sits in Tulipan Chino (Spanish), African Tulip or Flame of the Forest Trees (English), Xukul Nicte (Maya). Club Santiago in Colima is a haven for birding and bird photography.
Resort photography capturing birds of Miramar Beach Colima birds
The Lesser Crested Tern has a noticeably orange bill compared to other terns. Thanks to biologist Olivia Floyd for her assistance in identifying these birds of Miramar Colima.
Pelican Flight

This post isn’t aimed at classifying all the birds Miramar Colima. That would be a months long project. In fact, it’s mostly about photographing one magnificent flight –– a pelican flight. There’s nothing unusual or exotic about pelicans. But to see them through the eyes of wonderment was an experiment I was eager to embrace. They overwhelmed my imagination, seized my vision and possessed my lenses for hours at a time as I remained immersed in a zestful zone of tranquility. And that’s the zen experience photographers live for. 

My obsession with these large gregarious waterbirds isn’t new. I was fascinated with pelicans since before I was born… or at least since I first saw them soaring above The Sea of Cortez along Baja, Mexico. But on this occasion, I had glass and gear capable of capturing their extraordinary fluidity. 

My aim was to follow a single dramatic flight of these jurassic birds as it soared, dove, plunged, gathered fish into its large gular sac and finally swallowed whole its unlucky prey. I was able to capture all those things… just not in one take.

It was a lucky moment to catch two diving pelicans in one frame on a cloudy day.
Sunset diving bird photography
prehistoric features pelican
Birds of Miramar Colima

What was it about ordinary pelicans and the birds of Miramar Colima that snared my senses?

Is it their prehistoric features? Brown Pelicans portrayed in these pictures, (Pelicanus occidentalis) have prehistoric antecedents dating back over 30 million years. So, if we listen, they have tales to tell. 

Or is it their sleek design and aerial artistry? I became obsessed with capturing pelicans diving head-first into a school of fish… In one magnificent flight, a soaring pelican spots its prey before folding its wings tightly to its body as it plummets like an arrow into the ocean water below. How is it possible for them to hit the water at 40 MPH without shattering their bits? What polarized lens in their eyes allow them to see fish through the water’s glare? And throughout eons of evolution, what might some of the extinct pelican cousins have looked like?

I was in awe too about the tightness of the pelican community. Perhaps I was reflecting over troubled human relationships of my own. In nature and spiritual realms, pelicans value community and teamwork. From my perspective, they seem to live in perfect harmony. In fact, all the birds of Miramar seem to flourish. None of them were bothered by my camera or concerned about personality. 

But in exploring facts for the birds of Miramar Colima, I found that adult pelicans aren’t always so sweet. They sometimes scoop up pre-fledged relatives. In a quick second, one life taken by another –– into a pelican basket bill and swallowed whole. So in that sense, ancient Egyptians had it right. They associated the pelican (henet) with death and the afterlife.

Native Americans revered the pelican with self sacrifice and protection. The Nez Perce considered Pelican a medicine bird, and seeing a pelican in a dream or vision was a sign that a man had been granted spiritual power.

In Christian mythology, according to the Durham World Heritage Site, “the pelican was believed to pierce its own breast with its hooked beak and feed its young of its blood. It became a symbol of Christ sacrificing himself for man – and because of this was frequently represented in Christian art.” 

But do pelicans really feed their chicks blood? Vladimír Komárek, the Dean of the Second Faculty of Medicine Prague Czechoslovakia, explains:

“According to legend, pelican parents tear their chests apart with their beaks and the running blood of the wounds is used to feed the offspring. This is not accurate. Pelicans actually collect as many fish as possible into their beaks, then press their beaks to their chest, and gradually push the fish into the beaks of their up to seven fledglings. The notion that the offsprings are fed by the blood of the mother that she herself provides by attacking her own chest is simply a myth.”

Birds of Miramar beach Colima soar

Photography capturing birds of Miramar Colima birds
A story about the birds of Miramar Colima would not be complete without the inclusion of hummingbirds.
Unique the Americas from south central Alaska to Tierra del Fuego, Hummingbirds migrate great distances. Hundreds hummed where we stayed at Vida Del Mar.
Who knows, maybe this same little friend will visit our gardens this summer.

Being in awe of the ordinary is my preferred state of mind. It’s a cerebral space that elicits art.

Each fabric of our universe is like a birthday present waiting to be opened. And allowing immersion in photographing projects like the birds of Miramar Colima, is like hearing an untold story.

Thank you for listening with me.

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