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Shining bright

Shining bright
Photo Information
Copyright: Gerhard Theron (gerhardt) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1936 W: 244 N: 4106] (11620)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2005-01-08
Categories: Birds
Camera: Canon EOS 300D, Canon EF 100-400mm F/4.5-5.6L IS USM, Digital ISO 100, Hoya UV-Guard (77mm)
Exposure: f/8, 1/200 seconds
Details: (Fill) Flash: Yes
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2005-01-09 8:12
Viewed: 4503
Favorites: 1 [view]
Points: 30
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Cape Glossy Starling
Lamprotornis nitens

nitens (Latin) = shining, bright.

Identification: 25 cm, 90 g; sexes alike. Head is glossy blue, no distinctive ‘patch’ on ear-coverts. Upperparts otherwise blue-green, including wings and tail; small dark spots or bluish tips to coverts, and bronzy-purple epaulet on bend of wing. Under parts bluish on throat and breast, belly and under tail coverts more green. Bill and legs black, eyes bright orange-yellow. A partial albino bird had pure white head, neck, mantle and breast, with scattered white feathers elsewhere, and plumage blue-green lacking iridescence.

Confusing species: In our region, often alongside Greater and Miombo Blue-eared Glossy Starlings. This species has no contrasting colours on ear-coverts or flanks, when viewed in good light. Small bronzy-purple patch on epaulet and generally 2 rows of dark spots visible on wing-coverts.

Distribution: Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, South Africa except winter rainfall region of sw and s Cape; absent from drier country except near water. North of our region through Angola to mouth of Congo R; in s Dem. Rep Congo, and w Zambia.

General Habits: In small groups, sometimes gathering in flocks to roost or feed. Flight is noisy owing to indentations in primary feathers. Often forages on the ground, where birds both run and hop. Tame and familiar at picnic sites in protected areas; common garden bird in many parts of the country.

Foraging and Food: Fruit, insects, nectar, scraps from people, and even meat. Glossy Starlings also regularly associated with ungulates, feeding on ground near them, hawking insects while perched on impala and white rhinos, and removing ecto-parasites from cattle, sable and gemsbok.

Technical data
Time of day: 11:31 AM
Weather conditions: Slightly overcast
Focal length: 200mm
Flash: Canon Speedlight 550, Patterned
Tripod: Silk Monopod
Camera mode: Aperture priority
Photoshop CS: Cropped, USM (40,3,1).

ellis49, Callie, milloup, JeanMichel, mumek, Signal-Womb, Fisher, red45, deud, Luc has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To red45: Somethingos orangos...gerhardt 1 01-10 04:35
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Critiques [Translate]

ces reflets bleutés sont remarquables !
en voila un qui rafole de la papaye ;)
la pdc est tres bonne , la composition reussie, la note est tres instructive.
merci ;)

Great shot Gerhard.
The plumage is great with the shimmering blue and green.
And the eye have great colours too. Very good pose and composition, good details and a great note.
Excellent work my Friend.

Sure is glossy Gerhardt. Very nice capture. Excellent pose and DOF. Very well done. Glad to have you back from your holidays

Très belle photo. Les couleurs, la netteté et la composition, la profondeur de champ, tout est parfait. Je vois que tu attires les oiseaux par le ventre toi aussi. FÉLICITATIONS !

  • Great 
  • Midi Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 146 W: 24 N: 183] (2418)
  • [2005-01-09 10:08]

Superb shot, this bird is eating a papaye fruit.
I like the colors. Bravo!!

  • Great 
  • Callie Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1101 W: 95 N: 2610] (7555)
  • [2005-01-09 10:09]

Welkom terug
Hoop jy het die avairy geniet.
These birds are extreamly difficult to photograph - not because one cannot get near them but because of their plumage colour and the way the sun wrecks havoc with the irridescence.
The same with the eye, I have more than 100 shots of this bird myself, and the eye always sort of Pop off or out. I don't mean this as slating the picture, just something about the shineyness of the eye that looks "off"
Other than that, this is a very good picture, with nice colours in the plumage. I hope you got a Burchell's too.

Great capture of this glossy beauty, he looks almost like a statue caught in this pose - press the button, and he'll peck once.. ;-))
No nits, it's just beautiful.

  • Great 
  • edji Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Note Writer [C: 83 W: 8 N: 22] (426)
  • [2005-01-09 11:15]

Nice shot, the colors of the bird are beautiful.

I'm amazed by the treasures South African wildlife offers to a photographer. It must be thrilling for you guys, to catch all these beauties, and this one is another example of this richness. Very good photo, showing even the humid beak plunging in the fruit. Food colors adds to the beauty by it's contrast with this shiny bird. Very well done, Gerhard.

  • Great 
  • mumek Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 104 W: 0 N: 180] (853)
  • [2005-01-09 14:01]

Fantastic shot.Looks like 3 D picture.Excellent composition
with super colors and details.Very nice contrast between background and the starling.
Thanks for posting

  • Great 
  • japie Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1814 W: 100 N: 1904] (5187)
  • [2005-01-09 15:19]

All that counts here for him is the food, forget the photographer.

The sharpness here is very good and I like the shimmer on the wings. The eye is very bright as well.

Very well done and thanks for posting

Yes, I love the glossy appearance of this starling and hes really making a meal of that. Good composition and nicely isolated from the BG. Very good note.

  • Great 
  • Fisher Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1540 W: 309 N: 2234] (8915)
  • [2005-01-09 22:00]

Gerhard, at least your starling is beautiful. Ours, I'm ready to do a genecide on them. They are pests.
Almost like our Brewers black bird. Well done on this capture. TFS.


  • Great 
  • red45 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2636 W: 74 N: 9091] (31094)
  • [2005-01-10 4:11]
  • [+]

Great shot Gerhard! It is really shinny. I like composition with dark, shinning bird and this somethingos orangos which it eat. What's that? Rotten shrimps ;-) ?

  • Great 
  • deud Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 438 W: 11 N: 534] (2540)
  • [2005-01-10 10:20]

yes, the colour of plumage is great!

  • Great 
  • Luc Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1835 W: 301 N: 4287] (14767)
  • [2005-01-10 15:22]

An interesting post, Gerhard: picture and note.

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