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Posts Tagged ‘early bird’

The early bird gets the worm, they say, but this mid-morning Tufted Titmouse (Baeolophus bicolor) was eating something different when I spotted it through the trees last Friday at Occoquan Bay National Wildlife Refuge.

It is always a challenge to get shots of birds as small as this one (approximately 5.5-6.3 inches (14-16 cm) in length), but I have found that my chances of success increase when a subject stops to eat. I could see the little titmouse clearly, but there was a lot of vegetation between us.  As a result, I had to move from side to side, trying to find a clear visual tunnel. I am happy with what I was able to get, even if the bird’s distinctive pointed crest did end up being blocked from view by a tree.

Tufted Titmouse

Tufted Titmouse

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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In the early morning, I am particularly sensitive to shapes and sounds. I saw and heard this bird calling from atop a dead tree on Monday at Huntley Meadows Park and assumed I would capture only its silhouette. It was a nice bonus that its light-colored eye was shining brightly despite the limited light.

What kind of bird is it? Perhaps it’s a Rusty Blackbird, judging from the color of the eye, though there are really not enough details to make a good call. Identification seems less important to me than normally, because this image is mostly about mood and composition for me. The wonderful texture of the weathered wood and the sense of joy that radiates for the bird prompted me to post this image after initially rejecting it.

Some days I am drawn to my simple graphic images, and I guess that today is one of those days.

shining eye

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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There is something really special about the moment when the darkness of the night finally gives way to the early light of the dawn and the sky is tinged with delicate shades of pink and orange. The silence is broken by the sounds of awakening birds as their day begins.

It’s not an optimal time for wildlife photography—there is simply not enough light to reveal all of the colors and the details of the subjects. Recently, though, I managed to capture a sense of the dawn in this image of a duck ascending into the air, heading for an unknown destination.

Early bird

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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