UNDENIABLY NATTY: BLUE-GRAY GNATCATCHERS ON ABACO
As I sort through 11,867* recent photographs from Abaco and dump the 99% of them that fall into any of the ‘epic fail’, ‘hopeless’, ‘what on earth?’, ‘why on earth’?, ‘sun-flared’, ‘pitch black’, and ‘bird-butt’ categories, a few are making it through the rigorous editorial process. There will be birds, fish, whales, dolphins, expeditions and scenery in due course, but I’m kicking off with a small bird that is a great favourite, the Blue-gray Gnatcatcher Polioptila caerulea. This is because it is probably the easiest bird to pish, click, whistle or otherwise vocalise from the back of the coppice to the front. Then it gets flirty with the camera, performs cutely, and follows you down the track. The perfect subject except for one thing: they are small and branches / twigs are numerous. So, many shots consist of a magnificently focussed stick or leaf, with a blue-gray blur behind it…
BLUE-GRAY GNATCATCHERS “TOP 5 CUTE?”
BLUE-GRAY GNATCATCHERS “ON SONG IN THE COPPICE”
*This may be a slight exaggeration, but it certainly seems like it now…
All photos: RH
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That is one cute bird! I have found them to be hard to photo because they are always on the move.
Thanks, Alan. Just what I find! They are a joy, and we saw more than usual this year, often in pairs and therefore getting ‘Springy’. I had to junk 80% of the pics I took for blur or intervening leaves / twigs as they flickered around in the bushes!!
Fantastic photos, RH! I love watching these cuties, and today I heard the first one in our forest of the new spring season. I am impressed with your images here, as they are a twitchy bird and seem to like being quite high in the trees too. 😃