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~White-backed Magpie~

~White-backed Magpie~
Photo Information
Copyright: Tina Sieben (gypsygirl58) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 101 W: 0 N: 138] (426)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2007-03-30
Categories: Birds
Camera: Pentax K100D, Sigma 55-200mm F4-5.6 DC
Exposure: f/8, 1/125 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2007-04-17 9:25
Viewed: 4232
Points: 20
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
I took this photo whilst on a visit to Mt Lofty Botanical Gardens in the Adelaide hills recently. It is of a White-backed Australian Magpie. He very obligingly posed for me while I took this shot!!

Australian Magpie
Gymnorhina tibicen
The Australian Magpie is black and white, but the plumage pattern varies across its range. Its nape, upper tail and shoulder are white in males, grey in females. Across most of Australia, the remainder of the body is black. In the south-east, centre, extreme south-west and Tasmania, the back and rump are entirely white. The eye of adult birds is chestnut brown.

An uncommon alternative name for the Australian Magpie is Flute Bird, which refers to its loud musical flute-like song, often performed as a duet or by groups.

Distribution and Habitat
Australian Magpies are common and conspicuous birds, found wherever there is a combination of trees and adjacent open areas, including parks and playing fields. They are absent only from the densest forests and arid deserts. Groups of up to 24 birds live year round in territories that are actively defended by all members of the group. The group depends on this territory for all their feeding, roosting and nesting requirements.

Food and feeding
The Australian Magpie walks along the ground searching for insects and their larvae. Birds will also take handouts from humans and will often venture into open houses to beg for food.

Although the Australian Magpie is generally quite tame, during the breeding season magpies (especially males) fiercely defend their nest and territories by basically dive bombing any perceived threat whether in the air on the ground including humans, sometimes resulting in a jab to the back of the head, or at the very least a huge fright. They prefer to wait until the quarry is not looking, so often the first you know of it is when wings are beating beside your ears.
The nest is a platform of sticks and twigs (occasionally wire), with a small interior bowl lined with grass and hair. The nest is constructed in the outer branches of a tree, up to 15 m above the ground.

This information is from:

PP Work:
Cropped the image a tad from the original
Altered the brightness and contrast levels
Sharpened the image

Thanks for looking and for your comments and critiques. Cheers Tina :-)

Argus, deblink, Necipp, MommaMiaX3, Shoot_Score, angybone has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • Argus Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
  • [2007-04-17 11:01]

Hello Tina,
Nice capture of an Australian Magpie showing sharply against the floral BG and posing nicely on the watering hose. Fine comp and lighting too.
When I was in Australia I liked to hear the sounds these guys made.
Regards, Ivan

Hi Tina,
Nice image of this Magpie. He posed nicely for you. Lovely colourful background. Like Ivan I love the sound they make but not so much around full moon when one can be woken by them. I have been swooped many a time by them around nesting time. Your image is lovely and sharp with nice lighting.

Hello Tina welcome over here, nice shot captured strong contrast although on the whole has impact does mean your detail in whites and blacks is saturated. lovely sharpness. good eye focus. TFS rgds Necip

Hello Tina, :)

Very nice capture of this Magpie, I really enjoy seeing these beautiful birds! Great sharpness and Colours, perfect pose he held for you. Good thing the sprinkler didn't come on! Thanks for sharing, and hope you have a great day!


Amazing offset of this magpie with its iridescence against that beautiful background! Lucky bird that the gardeners didn't turn on the sprinklers. Tfs, J.

PS I appreciate the mention of the "Flute Bird".

Some overexposed areas but it is not disturbing. It is actually even nice to look at in this case.
Nice background enhancing the beauty of the bird.
Nice eye.
Excellent composition.
A natural perch would have been beter than artificial. This is a small nit. The average pic is brilliant.
Like it a lot.

  • Great 
  • arfer Gold Star Critiquer [C: 2731 W: 0 N: 0] (0)
  • [2007-04-26 22:37]

Hello Tina

A lovely shot of this magpie.The colours are well saturated.Excellent DOF and POV.The details are very good.The rain drops are a nice touch.TFS


Nice shot. I like the contrast between the subject and the background.

Wonderful image. One of my 'issues' is dynamic range - heavens forbid I end up with black and white in the same photo. I generally lose any and all detail in the black. You managed to avoid this. Great composition as well! Good shot!!!

bonjour tina
tres joli,les blanc sont un peu trop exposés mais la netteté et bonne,avec vous mis l'arrosage en marche pour l'embeter?

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