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Lekking Capercaillie

Lekking Capercaillie
Photo Information
Copyright: Paul van Slooten (pvs) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1127 W: 254 N: 3161] (14464)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2008-05-02
Categories: Birds
Camera: Sony Alfa dSLR A700, Sony 300mm F2.8 G, Digital RAW 200
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2008-08-22 3:08
Viewed: 5797
Points: 18
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Another upload from my trip to Finland last spring,we visited a lekking site where we could observe the lekking of this bird,we arrived at the lekking site the night before and overnighted in a small hide (this as the lekking takes place from early in the morning and not to disturbe it),here a small compilation of this lekking,a pity that sound is not available as it was a pleasure to see and listen to this lekking bird,the series are made from about 10 to 15 meters just when the capercaillie was performing its dance between 2 trees,pictures are made with short time between eachother and are cropped a bit,hope you like it and tfw,at the moment packing the bags again as we will go from beginning next week to svalbard,yeah snow and ice agai,hope I can show you more in due time.

In April, the male capercaillies move to an open part of their woodland territory and perform their ‘lek’. Lek is an Old Norse word meaning ‘to dance’, and relates to the birds’ bizarre courtship display. The males strut about with their tails fanned out, and wings held down, while producing an extraordinary sequence of noises including some that sound like strangled gurgles and asthmatic wheezes. Interspersed with these are popping noises like corks being drawn from champagne bottles. Some experts believe that some of these sounds, below the range of human ears, carry for many miles and declare to any female capercaillie that the male making the noise is in his prime. They may also indicate that he has a fine territory, well provided with nesting sites and a good food source for the chicks. As the females arrive at the lekking site, the males become even more excited. Sometimes, several males will gather at a lekking site and spectacular fights can break out, during which birds can be seriously injured and even killed.

oanaotilia, Seabird, PaulH, anel, crs, nglen, Evelynn has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To fragman: Thankspvs 1 08-22 07:43
To crs: Thankspvs 1 08-22 05:25
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Critiques [Translate]

Hi, Paul,

this is a very interesting photo. very nicely presented with attractive colours. thanks for sharing.

Man Yee

Hy Paul
I never had the opportunity to meet this impresive species. I heard that thier spring "dansing" is amzing and is an unique spectacle in animals(birds)world. Your colage is fantastic, I don't have anything to say! Only , from heart: TFS!!

  • Great 
  • PaulH Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1137 W: 26 N: 3879] (13882)
  • [2008-08-22 3:48]

Hi Paul,
i was lucky enough to see one of these in the wild in the highlands of Scotland a couple of years ago...didn't have a camera with me then though! Superb collection of shots, each one with an excellent POV and good sharp focus. I would love to see this lekking for myself, it sounds fascinating..

  • Great 
  • anel Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 3053 W: 3 N: 8715] (40574)
  • [2008-08-22 4:40]

Hello Paul,
Excellent assemblage showing the capercaillie's dance to impress females. I like the way you composed this picture with the different sequences of the dance. This bird lives also in my country, but is seen very seldom. Early morning seems to be the best time to be lucky to see it.
Thanks and best regards

  • Great 
  • crs Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 469 W: 0 N: 922] (3551)
  • [2008-08-22 5:19]
  • [+]

Hello Paul,

You have presented a very interesting cologe. As far as I know it is not easy to come close to these birds. You did it well and captured these nice images without using a teleobjective.


amazing set of pics, please post one of them in a larger size, TFS Ori

  • Great 
  • pvb Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 385 W: 16 N: 531] (1981)
  • [2008-08-22 7:56]

Hi Paul,
Wat een uitslover is dit zeg. Ik hoop voor hem en z'n soort dat er een vrouwtje in de buurt was.
Je hebt deze reeks prachtig vast kunnen leggen ondanks de bomen die misschien af en toe in de weg stonden. Prachtig om de verschillende poses te zien en het is inderdaad erg jammer dat er geen geluid bij is.
Groetjes Paula

  • Great 
  • nglen Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2883 W: 30 N: 9683] (36145)
  • [2008-08-22 9:43]

Hi Paul. A good set of pictures all with good detail and colour. This must have been a sight and sound . Your pictures show them from every angle. well done TFS.

Have a good weekend,

This an super presentation of this bird and its behavior. The photos are sharp and the various poses are interesting.

Evelynn : )

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