Bohemian Waxwing

Ron Niebrugge Alaska, Photos, Travel 9 Comments

Bohemian Waxwing in the Mountain Ash in our backyard, Seward, Alaska.
Bohemian Waxwing on the Mountain Ash in our backyard, Seward, Alaska.

I love these colorful birds, but they sure can be tough to photograph.  Hundreds would descend on the tree at a time, and then they would feed in constant motion.  It was hard to pick a single bird out to photograph.  Then, all it takes is a crow to fly by, and the hundreds leave in a giant mass.  I almost got hit by birds a couple of times!

That pattern was repeated a number of times before I was finally able to get this photo.

I usually use flash for some fill light, but here, because it was so dark, I made it the main light source.

Comments 9

  1. Sounds like an Alfred Hitchcock movie for a minute there Ron! LOL! That’s a very pretty little bird.It kind of reminds me of a hummingbird. And that’s the perfect backdrop to bring out all those pretty colors.

  2. I love the Cedar Waxwings we get around here (Seattle) but that Bohemian is even prettier. Nice picture!

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    Author

    Thanks Genevieve, Do you ever see the Bohemians in Seattle?

    Thanks Beth – it was like a Alfred Hitchcock movie! They are pretty good sized birds, about the size of a robin.

    Ron

  4. I can’t wait for our young Mountain Ash to mature enough to produce berries so that we can see these incredibly beautiful birds. Nice photo. One of our new trees just snapped off about 4′ high in the strong winds. I think it will be awhile before that one produces.

    Mom

  5. Ron:

    Nice image and I do like the added fill.

    I’d like to do more bird photography but can’t swing anything like a 600+lens.
    Can you tell me what you use?

    Ray

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    Author

    Thanks mom – you are going to love those trees!

    Hi Ray,

    These guys actually let me get real close – this bird was 4.8 meters from the camera. I held really still, and kept my camera close to my face, and the flock didn’t seem to have any problem flying in. The first couple of flashes made them jump a little, then they didn’t seem to notice.

    I typically use a 600 for birds – usually with a converter, it makes a big difference!

    Because this is a short trip home for us, and the cost of shipping is so high, I left my 600 in storage in California, so this was with a 100-400, and cropped a little bit – I normally never crop, but felt it was ok in this situation, and because it was captured with a 22 mp camera.

    Thanks,

    Ron

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    Author
  8. Pingback: Bohemian Waxwing - Bombycilla garrulus | Birds of the World

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