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Blacksmith Plovers

Blacksmith Plovers
Photo Information
Copyright: George Veltchev (mwmod99) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 855 W: 655 N: 3361] (14196)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2010-01-04
Categories: Birds
Camera: Canon 40D, Canon 70-200 F4 L USM IS
Exposure: f/8, 1/350 seconds
Photo Version: Original Version, Workshop
Theme(s): Soap Bubble+ [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2010-10-22 3:14
Viewed: 4054
Points: 45
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
The family Charadriidae comprises 67 species, of which the Blacksmith Plover is one of the 11 species breeding in the southern hemisphere. Blacksmith Plovers are resident in South Africa, moving only small distances from their breeding territories.

Adults are striking in shades of black, white and grey. By far the most impacting character is their shrieking call when defending territories, eggs or chicks. Males and females are very similar in size and colour.

Blacksmith Plovers breed mainly from July to October with a peak in August and September but nests may be laid in any month if conditions are right. Nests are scrapes in the ground lined with a thin layer of small stones or vegetation. They are usually found near to water, marsh with short vegetation or mudflats. They usually lay three to four eggs but clutches of two and clutches of 5 or 6 have been recorded. Blacksmith Plovers are territorial when breeding and can have nests as close as 100m apart.

Incubation usually starts when the first egg is laid, but only when the last egg is laid are both parents diligently tending the eggs, taking shifts of 20 to 80 minutes each. Incubation takes about a month and chicks of the same clutch all hatch within a day, and sometimes within a few hours. Blacksmith Plover chicks are precocial, leaving the nest soon after hatching. Although Blacksmith Plovers do not feed their chicks or show them where food is, they brood the chicks when small and incapable of maintaining body temperature and the adults are particularly defencive, alarming when danger is still 600 to 800 meters away.

The image was taken early in the morning in RAW and ISO100

siggi, Pitoncle, joska, Dis. Ac., jhm, Argus, marius-secan, paolo49, marhowie, rousettus has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To omereser: CREATIVE coloursingridshaul 2 11-01 14:34
To jlinaresp: PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIALmwmod99 4 10-23 11:44
To jhm: Johnmwmod99 1 10-22 11:22
To PeterZ: Petermwmod99 2 10-22 08:15
To omereser: Omermwmod99 1 10-22 07:22
To ellis49: Gertmwmod99 1 10-22 07:08
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • zetu Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 967 W: 26 N: 3888] (16941)
  • [2010-10-22 3:17]

Hello George
Amazing birds, composition and colors
Thanks for sharing these beauties

Ciao George, lovely trio in nice pose in a beautiful natural ambientation, splendid sharpness and wonderful natural colors, very well done my friend, have a good week end, ciao Silvio

  • Great 
  • siggi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3097 W: 109 N: 12399] (52850)
  • [2010-10-22 3:48]

Hello George,
Wonderful capture with amazing colours and excellent details. Very nice image and well composed. Nice background and POV.Perfect focus.Best regards Siggi

Are they on the stone wall? I think you take this foto an zoo, aren't you?

  • Great 
  • lousat Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6595 W: 89 N: 15659] (65489)
  • [2010-10-22 4:11]

Hi George,very nice composition but not your best pic,the white on the bird's heads is burning..ehehe...it's nice to find something to not perfect in a pic of your gallery,is very very rare..ehehe...thanks for share,have a nice day,Luciano

Bonjour George,
Très belle publication valorisant bien les sujets grâce à une très bonne opposition de couleurs.
A bientôt sur TN pour de nouvelles aventures.

Ciao George. Perfect DOF and chromatic results. Wonderful light. Great work.TFS.


Hi George,
this is a nice picture of the Blacksmith Plovers.
Not easy to get right exposure of this bird with the B/W plumage.
I checked it in PS, the white is just over the limit but not much, thats a minor.
The picture is sharp with good DOF.
Well done, mf.
Have a nice Weekend.

Hello George,
Three times eye contact, very beautiful. Good saturated colours and fine sharpness and details. Pleasing environment and composition.

  • Great 
  • joska Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 806 W: 0 N: 4092] (22535)
  • [2010-10-22 8:22]

Hi George,
Excellent photo of this very interesting and nice Bird species, TFS!

  • Great 
  • PhilC Silver Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 24 W: 25 N: 117] (551)
  • [2010-10-22 8:22]

Hi George - this is a lovely well composed, and well exposed shot. I think you have done well to retain fine detail in the black plumage. Well done. Phil

Hello George Friend,

Certainly it is a painting rather "peaceful" compared to most of the pictures from you, where there is always something that enhances the visual and technical interest. But it is a matter of observing carefully, as surely was a real headache to find the proper exposure for these birds "gray, black and white" ... It's almost like shooting, small Holstein cows with feathers! ... ha ha ha ....
I see you again has "played" a bit with the saturation of blue water, this effect is really attractive to these photos taken with warm lights of the morning. For some reason, seems to me this "better conveys" the "temperature of the environment" (crazy ideas mine!). By the way, you've also saturated rocks different? or are the result just of the morning light?

Finally, as always; A excellent photo with a lot things to discuss! ... Good job of composing, leaving the birds in 2 [space] 1 ... I like it!

But ... Are you sure that you are not photographed these birds in a zoo? ... haaaaaaaaaaa ... haaaaaa .... haaaaaa ..! What fun! ... forgive me!... but really fun! ... Undeniable that your photos generate interest in various ways! ... a zoo on the edge of the sea! Sure only en Kommetjie! ...

I send a greeting and thanks for the "week of interesting sharing in TN"!


Hello George,

you surpised me this week with the birds images.
No insect macro's but beautiful sharp birds.
This one good pov and eyecontact with all thee, three of a kind.
Fine colours and nicely composed.


  • Great 
  • jhm Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 893 W: 0 N: 507] (1853)
  • [2010-10-22 9:55]
  • [+]

Hello George,

This type of plover is here not known.
Splendid bird, lovely plumage, splendid eyes too.
Very well taken, perfect of colors too.
Nice done, TFS.

Have a nice weekend,

  • Great 
  • Argus Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
  • [2010-10-22 12:39]

Hello George,
Though the BG is not ideal, it contrasts well with the subjects, three Blacksmith Plovers, taken with perfect sharpness, excellent lighting and natural colours. The eye contact from all three is excellent too in this pleasing composition.
Thanks and have a good weekend,

Hello George,
What a superb capture with great details and excellent focus.
The details of the eyes are outstanding. The composition is fine.
Congratulation, well done!

Hola George

Que aves mas bonitas, con esas tonalidades de grises y negras, y con esas patas tan largas, muy bellas, veo algo de saturación en las rocas... Pov excelente y gran nitidez

Un saludo de Antonio

Nice grouping of plovers, showing them from all angles.

Hello George,
beautiful capture of this strange birds, colors, details and light perfect. Excellent picture. Regards, Paolo

Striking birds George, great setting and getting all three in focus is no easy task.
To be honest, the colors look a bit off, my only nit.
Thank you & have a nice weekend!

  • Great 
  • fthsm Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 172 W: 56 N: 512] (3689)
  • [2010-10-24 3:11]

Morning light is the perfect time for photography and you have a good chance of getting nice photos at that time. Beautiful birds and a well composed photo indeed. TFS George.
Best Regards,

nice contrasty capture, TFS Ori

Hello George
what a beautiful plover species with pretty plumages and red eye-iris. They are similar to Spur winged Lapwing here, with exception of plumaga colors. you greatly captured them againts blue water. focus, POV/DOF and eyes contact great as like warm coloration and light using. nicely composed. thanks for sharing,
best wishes and have a good night my friend

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