December 2009 Bird Photo of the Month

“Peek-a-boo, I see you too” © J. R. Williams

A female “green bird” Painted Bunting shot in my garden next to the feeder I made at the ELC class last fall with the help of Billi Wagner. It was also the first of many Painted Buntings I have had since.

Photo taken: 2-9-09 in my backyard.
Camera: Canon EOS 50D
Lens: EF-100-400mm, 1/100sec. @ f/6.3, ISO 200

This female Painted Bunting, like many small birds, could be overlooked as it likes to hide camouflaged along the edges of thickets, hammocks, rivers ….watchful for a possible threat, ready to flee. They lurk in protective brush nearby ready to dart to feeders at this time of year, wintering here in warmer Indian River County as a true “snow bird.”

Essential to a good photograph of a bird, the eye is in focus and the lines of the branches and leaf veins seem to keep drawing our attention back to the bird’s eye.  Although their diet is mostly grass and weed seeds, they do eat beauty berries, beetles, wasps, crickets, and flies.  It’s brightly colorful male counterpart would light up this branch like a Christmas ball, but the subtle delicacy and really gorgeous green of the female can be appreciated in its own right in this photograph.

Thank you to all who sent in photos….sharing your photos is sharing things that would otherwise not be seen…that particular unique moment in time when you click your camera, can never be repeated.
Every photo is unique. 

Juanita Baker,
Coordinator for the PIAS Photo of the Month

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