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Photo Information
Copyright: Hilary Wilkinson (Hil) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 696 W: 13 N: 1407] (5035)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2008-03-23
Categories: Birds
Camera: Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ50
Exposure: f/5.0, 1/200 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2008-03-28 12:25
Viewed: 3285
Points: 28
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note

Can I just start by thanking everyone for their kind critiques and comment about my recent posts.

I spotted this Moorhen enjoying the Sun the other week, I was quite pleased with the shot as it had the red shield and beak with yellow tip, the white flash on the back and the yellow feet all visable.

Moorhen (Gallinula chloropus)

Rails (Rallidae)

The Moorhen is a medium-sized, ground-dwelling bird that is usually found near water. From a distance it looks black with a ragged white line along its body. Up close it is olive-brown on the back and the head and underneath is blue-grey. It has a red bill with a yellow tip. It breeds in the UK in lowland areas, especially in central and eastern England. It is scarce in northern Scotland and the uplands of Wales and northern England. UK breeding birds are residents and seldom travel far.

Where to see them?
Anywhere there is water from a pond to a lake or reservoir.

When to see them?
All year round

Water plants, seeds, fruit, snails, insects & worms, they also take bread

Moorhens are most similar to Coots but smaller, the shield on the forehead is red and the tip of the beak in yellow, from a distance they appear black but up close you can see they are shades of grey and brown with a white flash on their sides, they also have a white flash on the tail feathers and are about 33 cm long, both sexes are identical in appearance.

Nesting & Breeding
The male collects the twigs and the female builds the nest amongst vegetation at the waters edge, they typically lay a clutch of 8 Eggs which are smooth and glossy, white to green with reddish-brown or grey markings, both parents incubate and look after the young chicks, although they tend to incubate and hatch 2-3 first, these will go off with one parent leaving the other parent to look after the rest, the young are fed for 2-3 days before leaving the nest and swimming with their parents, on a good year they will have three broods but they do use a lot to Foxes, 2nd and 3rd broods are also looked after by their siblings

The population declined in the 1970s and 80s but has since been recovering. The decline seemed to be a result of reduced clutch size and this in turn may be caused by the spread of American mink Mustela vison, which predates birds' nests along waterways. They are not very good at picking fox-proof nest sites (like our islands) and make endless attempts as they lose clutches of eggs.

Burned the tail a little as it was totally OE

eqshannon, waylim, CeltickRanger, Miss_Piggy, Necipp, marhowie, Alex99, gracious, Adanac, fartash has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

A fine image and a totally different perspective than others I have seen which makes it even more so interesting...Nice colourings...truly!

  • Great 
  • waylim Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 296 W: 8 N: 489] (1765)
  • [2008-03-28 14:41]

Great image of this Moorhen. Really good sharpness and clarity. I like how all the detail you captured even underdeath the water, of the bird beet. Love the reflection. Light and colors are well balanced. Lovely image. Thanks so much for Sharing.

hello Hilary

lovely shot of this Moorhen with great luminosity of the image,
fine POV and framing, lovely reflection on water,
excellent sharpness and details, TFS


Hallo Hilary
A most delightful view of this Moorhen relaxing in the water and enjoying the full sun. I like the bird's reflection in the water, and the bright coloured beak are clearly reflected back. I find the visibility of the huge paws under the water line very interesting. Thank you very much for sharing. Enjoy your day.
Kind regards

Hello Hilary,

Very nice capture, the Moorhen is about to go for a swim,
I like the artistic texture of the water.. Well done


Hello Hillary a fine shot of a moorhen with lovely colours. Nice contrasty light. tfs rgds Necip

Nice details and you did a good job of exposing this difficult subject. The lights direction might not have been "optimal"?
Well focused, good colors..I might've ventured to take the branch out above as well.
Nice job saving the tail too :)

  • Great 
  • Alex99 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4072 W: 133 N: 7096] (23735)
  • [2008-03-29 11:30]

Hi Hilary.
What a nice bird you have pictured. I do not know this species and have not seen it any when. Great sharpness and details. Even legs under the water are visible perfectly. Excellent lighting and vivid colours, POV and framing very impressive. Well done and TFS.

Hello Hilary,
Good closeup on the Moorhen!
very sharp image with good colour and very fine details in it!
a beautiful reflection well included too
very pleasing presentation

  • Great 
  • joey Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1739 W: 224 N: 6872] (24909)
  • [2008-03-29 13:39]

Wow! You have got every feature of this bird in one shot! Even the yellow feet! :-)
Great clarity and detail in the feathers and excellent sharpness.
Nice composition.
A lower POV would have been more effective but then we wouldn't have seen the yellow feet so you did good!
Well done Hilary!
Thanks for sharing this,


  • Great 
  • Adanac Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1273 W: 1 N: 6188] (21378)
  • [2008-03-29 15:55]

Hello Hil,
An image you should be proud of, it displays this species superbly. The vivid colors and sharp details make this an outstanding composition, thank you Hil.

  • Great 
  • EOSF1 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1393 W: 119 N: 5267] (23955)
  • [2008-03-30 10:17]

Hello Hilary, that's a great picture of the Moorhen, good pose and composition, sharp details and very good exposure, very well done, thanks!


  • Great 
  • arfer Gold Star Critiquer [C: 2731 W: 0 N: 0] (0)
  • [2008-04-03 10:07]

Hello Hil

Lucky you,I can't get very close to the moorhens that live around here,they are wiley.
This is an impressive POV with excellent focus and sharpness.
The details are well defined and the colours are wonderful.
I love the look in the eye and the reflection that is cast in the water.
Great job.


Dear Hil
Excellent shot of this Moorhen,
Great colors,composition and BG. Welldone my friend.


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