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The new Airbus!

The new Airbus!
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: 2005-09-27
Categories: Birds
Camera: Canon EOS 20D, Canon EF 100-400mm F/4.5-5.6L IS USM, Digital ISO 100, Hoya UV-Guard (77mm)
Exposure: f/6.3, 1/3000 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): Birds of South Africa 2 [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2006-04-12 17:38
Viewed: 7136
Favorites: 1 [view]
Points: 68
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Great White Pelican
Pelecanus onocrotalus

I had to drop in and have look at some of your photos. Hope you are all doing well.

In Europe, the habitat includes freshwater lakes, deltas, marshes, or swamps; that is, wherever sufficient amounts of reedbeds or grasses exist for nesting. In Africa, the habitat includes lowlands and alkaline or freshwater lakes. This pelican's fishing technique demands shallow, warm water.

Lives, breeds, migrates, feeds, and formation flies in large colonies. Fishing takes up a very small portion of the pelican's day, as most individuals are done feeding by 8-9 am. The rest of the day is spent loafing, preening, and bathing, activities that are carried out on sandbars or small islands. The bird bathes by ducking head and body in water while flapping wings. The pelican will gape or spread its wings when hot as a form of thermoregulation. When defending its territory, a male will threaten intruders by gaping, clapping its bill, bowing; the pelican will attack with the bill as its main weapon.

Economic Importance for Humans: Negative

May eat some commercially important fish, but generally this pelican eats non-commercial fish such as shoalfish and cichlids. Pouch has been used for tobacco pouches and sheaths. Young pelicans are prized for fat; the oils derived from pelican fat are used for medicine in China and India (to fight rheumatism). Pelican feathers and skin are used to make leather. Excrement makes for good, cheap fertilizer in third world countries.

I used a blue/amber grad filter and would like to hear your take on this.

mlines, Fisher, ALIRIZA, aido, marhowie, shal, Luc, AdrianW, taba, loot, scottevers7, Matt-Bird, coasties, Signal-Womb, PDP, Nico, Athila, Janice, rdiaz80, TBW has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To AdrianW: Thanx for the kind words...gerhardt 2 04-19 15:22
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • Fisher Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1540 W: 309 N: 2234] (8915)
  • [2006-04-12 17:41]

Hi Gerhard,

Good to see you posting.
Beautiful shot and well done on the composition and details. The lighting is perfect. What a bird.


  • Great 
  • mlines Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 556 W: 26 N: 668] (3116)
  • [2006-04-12 17:41]

Hi Gerhard, Good clear capture of this very large bird. The clarity is good enough to see the fine definition on each feather. Very good photo.

Hi Gerhard,
Excellent flying shot Sharpness, colors and POV are wonderful . Congratulations...
Ali Rıza

  • Great 
  • aido Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor [C: 1044 W: 156 N: 1218] (4046)
  • [2006-04-12 17:52]

Hi Gerhard,
Great shot, nice title :-) I think the grad filter works really well, it gives the impression of last light as the sunlight is weakening and fading. Great capture, DOF is spot-on and detail perfect. Lovely shot.

  • Great 
  • shal Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 256 W: 64 N: 481] (2140)
  • [2006-04-12 18:18]

Hi Gerhard ,
Great detail and DOF,
a superb capture of this Great White Pelican,
Bravo TFS,
Vishal Sabharwal

Great shot, and it's nice to see you back over here again! The pelican almost looks cut and pasted on the background, he's that sharp :) The grad filter seems to have worked like a charm here, although usually I'd hesistate to try something like that myself... Curiously there's a small amount of noise visible in the sky and under the wings, but it's not major. I'd be curious to hear about your post process on this one! Anyway, an interesting note and excellent work as usual :-D

P.S. Love the title!

  • Great 
  • taba Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 466 W: 124 N: 312] (1847)
  • [2006-04-12 20:15]

Hi Gerhard
Simply fantastic. Great DOF, POV sharpness, colours etc.
well done.

  • Great 
  • manyee Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3089 W: 230 N: 6774] (23770)
  • [2006-04-12 20:17]

Hello Gerhard.
It is so nice to see you. We really miss your beautiful pictures.
This one is no exception. The light on the pelican is gorgeous.
Everything is perfect. Thank you for sharing. : )

Hi Gerhard,
Interesting to see the blue+amber filter. I would not have guessed .... it does enhance the picture . .wonder what the sky looked like that day without the filter.
Like your shot, you have the DOF and exposure down very well ... and somehow, you have not burnt the white on the wing .. something that I am struggling with .. so nice to see that it is possible :)

  • Great 
  • jossim Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1538 W: 5 N: 2240] (12636)
  • [2006-04-12 22:34]

Bonjour Gerhard!

Toujours un plaisir de voir une prise de cette qualité. Félicitations car,tout est parfaits.

Merci pour l'envoie.


Hi Gerhard,
HE'S BACK! An excellent in flight. Great pose frozen perfectly. Very sharp detail. Honestly though, I am not to sure about the filter. Knowing these birds are mostly brilliant white, it makes him appear dull. It did help bring great detail in the plumage that may have been lost to OE. I got to shoot alot of these awhile back, and it is very difficult to get the exposure right. Looks excellent. hope you back for awhile at least.

  • Great 
  • loot Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5551 W: 721 N: 4164] (11276)
  • [2006-04-12 23:15]

Hello Gerhard
This is a magnificent capture of this great white. Your experimentation (or shear guts) with the blue/amber filter really paid some dividends here. It created a sunset tone to the photo although it was only 09h53 in the morning.
The composition is great and the cropping ensured the bird have sufficient space to 'fly into'. The colours are stunning and the DOF is excellent showing some lovely details on the bird. Although the BG is a little bit noisy it is still very complimentary to the shot and the exposure was perfectly managed showing magnificent contrasts especially on the whites.
Very well done, TFS and a welcome posting from you again.

Great capture Gerhard. Very good POV and great timing. But it's the lighting that makes this special for me. Looks great.

Well done

  • Great 
  • osse Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 955 W: 0 N: 89] (7805)
  • [2006-04-13 5:43]

Hi Gerhard
Super detail and DOF.Great sharpnes, BG, colours, POV and composition.
Well done


  • Great 
  • sAner Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1462 W: 74 N: 1428] (4750)
  • [2006-04-13 6:35]

Hi Gerhard,
This is a very nice picture. You froze the action well. The exposure is very good and I assume the filter worked perfectly. I do have the feeling there is more than average noise though. As you used ISO 100, that must have something to do with sharpening or is it my monitor?

I hope you're doing okay, btw!


Hi Gerhard,
It's great to see a post from you again..
Just like old times ;)
Excellent inflight. Very good sharpness, detail, exposure, DOF, POV and pose. I think the Grad filter has made a positive difference. It has warmed the pelicans color and produced an interesting sky for BG.
Very well done mf. Wish it was mine :)

Hi Gerhard, Perfect photo. Excellent details graet contrast, Perfect in everyway. TFS Kyle

Hi Gerhard, great photo. This is a beautiful photo of a pelican. Very sharp and a very nice composition.
Regards Matt.

Hi Gerhard

Wow!! Wonderful capture. Excellent timing. The clarity and sharpness is your usual top notch quality. Colours are well saturated with a lovely 'warmness' and I can only assume this is helped by the filter. Nice one! :-)

  • Great 
  • wuta Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 855 W: 2 N: 617] (2142)
  • [2006-04-13 14:07]

Hello Gerhard , A Beautifull shot , sharpnes compositie
colours the bg and pov very good ,tfs, Greetings Teunie .

  • Great 
  • naki Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor [C: 382 W: 27 N: 5] (40)
  • [2006-04-13 14:43]

Hi Gerhard,
What a good timing. I like the filter. First I thought you shot it at the early or late sun.
Excellent detail and composition.
Very well done.

Wow Gerhard, excellent capture with great detail and pose. Creative use of grad filter on this which really adds to the shot. Very fine work.

Brilliant capture Gerhard,
One of those late nights. Hopefully all back to normal after tonight.
Well worth a big green :)
Thanks for posting, have a great Easter weekend.

Hi Gerhard,
it's great to see a post from you again and as always it's a great one.
The details and POV are very good. Nice colours and light.
Excellent work, my friend.

I'm leaving for a fortnight's vacation, be back in the end of this month. See you later.

  • Great 
  • PDP Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor [C: 2821 W: 344 N: 3779] (11769)
  • [2006-04-17 18:54]

Hello Gerhard, Lovely shot and a great title. Very sharp in flight, veer well done on that. Great composition too and I think the filter has given a very nice touch. Very well done!

I'm well, I hope you are too.

  • Great 
  • Nico Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 199 W: 1 N: 335] (1321)
  • [2006-04-19 10:58]

Great shot. Good warm colours, I like it. He seems to be smiling. What does he know?

Great shot Gerhardt. I am late on this one and see others have used up all the superlatives. Cheers, Rob

  • Great 
  • Athila Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 335 W: 239 N: 493] (1982)
  • [2006-04-24 19:43]

Hi Gerhard!

Effectively it does look like and Airbus! Excellent sharpness and exposure. BG is marvelous. Composition excellent. A well deserved green smiles. TFS.

Beautiful infligt shot of a Pelican, the ligjhting illuminate the bird well on both top and bottom with great detail. :)


I was wondering why this time you didn't frame it as the rest of your pictures?
Besides that I like the picture a lot.
Funny title.

Another excellent photo of yours! Colors look great, details are superb and composition very well done. You did a nice job showing the pelican from the side view. One can clearly see the streamlined body shape from this angle. TFS.


  • Great 
  • deud Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 438 W: 11 N: 534] (2540)
  • [2006-10-13 4:23]

beautiful in flight action shot! Beautiful bird with excellent focus, details, colors, light. great job. tfs

Awesome sharpness and awesome timing! Absolutely great!

  • Great 
  • TBW Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 94 W: 28 N: 200] (846)
  • [2006-11-18 6:57]

A wonderful shot. If not the airbus, it reminds me of the old airplanes that could land on water. You know, the kind that flew the first trans-atlantic flights from europe to usa. Did you know, by the way, that the drink "Irish coffe" supposedly oroginated from these first trans-atlantic flights? On the trip from usa they had to make several stops to fill gas, and the first landfall in europe was Irland, where they landed usually early in the morning. The passangers were given coffe with a little extra to wake them up after the long flight (or maybe it was to get them drowsy again, i dont know..!) - and there you have Irish coffe.


Nice shot with good technical quality. I have no suggestions of improvement.


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