Fishing is an acquired skill, even for birds. One excellent fishing classroom for young birds is the rookery at Wildwing Lake in Kensington Metro Park.
“One morning in June,” said photographer Mudg Poster of West Bloomfield, “I arrived at dawn to find fledgling Great Blue Herons and Great Egrets standing hip deep in water in a sheltered part of the lake.
“They were practicing their fishing skills. They pulled many sticks, rocks and pond greens out of the water. Every once in awhile a surprised bird caught a fish.”
Poster’s photo of the fledglings is one of this week’s finalists in The Detroit News’ 10th annual Celebrate Michigan Photo Contest, which continues throughout the summer. The contest rewards photos that capture the people, animals, scenery, places and events that make Michigan special.
Each Wednesday through Sept. 7, Detroit News judges will select four photos to become eligible for prizes to be awarded on Sept. 14.
Other finalists named this week:
■“Jolly Dolly Jumps into Pleiness Lake” by Veronica Bareman of Holland. A happy 9-year-old Lab mix leaps off the dock at the family cottage.
■“Storm Rolling Away on Traverse Bay” by Rick Motyl of Troy. A stone pier in Elk Rapids cuts through the green waters of Traverse Bay, contrasting with the dark blue sky of a passing storm in this digitally enhanced entry.
■“Waiting for the Wind on Tioga Lake” by John Snyder of Dexter. The sepia tones of the lake, sky and a lone sailboat evoke the feeling of an Old Masters painting.
The prizes are:
■First prize: A two-night stay for two at Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island, plus a 16-inch-by-20-inch framed print of your photo.
■Second prize: A waterproof GoPro HERO4 Session camera, for capturing on-the-go video and photos.
■Third prize: A $100 gift card to etsy.com, where you can find hand-crafted Michigan products and more.
■Best digitally enhanced image: A 16-inch-by-20-inch print of your photo, plus four tickets to any Emagine theater.
■In addition, the Michigan Wildlife Council has donated a 10 x 25 pair of digital camera binoculars to every photographer who has a photo in the finals. See that wildlife a little closer and snap its picture, too!
The contest is open to all nonprofessional photographers who are 18 years or older, except employees of The Detroit News, Michigan.com and their immediate families. For the contest rules, go to detroitnews.com/ celebratemichigan, where you can view all of the entries, share them on social media, browse a photo gallery of the finalists and enter your own Michigan scenes.