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Who is this Marilyn Monroe?

Who is this Marilyn Monroe?
Photo Information
Copyright: Bengt Falke (falke) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 153 W: 18 N: 479] (1863)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2007-04-05
Categories: Birds
Camera: Canon 400D, Canon 300/4 L IS USM + EF 1.4 ext. II
Exposure: f/5.6, 1/2000 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2007-05-16 8:11
Viewed: 5047
Favorites: 1 [view]
Points: 60
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
The Little Egret (Egretta garzetta/silkeshäger) is very common in the wetlands of southern France. You see them almost all the time. However in Sweden were we live, they are very rare so it is wonderful for us to get such close views of them.

In the bird reserve Le Teich, there are more than 20 hides so it is easy to find one for your self (at least in April when we were there).

This Little Egret was totally unaware of us and walked towards us until I had to remove the extender to get a full photo of it. This is one of the more interesting photos from this session, as it illustrates the Swedish name so well (silk egret), with the wind from behind blowing in its feathers.

Two small details, see the almost black legs with the yellow feet and the light blue field between the eye and the bill.

Geographic info:

This is photo is from a hide in Le Teich bird reserve in the southeast part of the bassain d’Arcachon to the west of Bordeaux in France.

About the specie:

From Wikipedia:
The Little Egret, Egretta garzetta is a small white heron. It is the Old World counterpart to the very similar New World Snowy Egret.

There are at least two subspecies of Little Egret. The nominate subspecies E. g. garzetta occurs in Europe, Africa and Asia. E. g. nigripes breeds in Indonesia and Australasia. Those in Australia are sometimes thought to represent a third subspecies E. g. immaculata.

Several other egret taxa have at times been classified as subspecies of the Little Egret in the past but are now regarded as separate species. The Western Reef-Egret, Egretta gularis occurs on the coastline of West Africa (race gularis) and from the Red Sea to India (race schistacea). The Dimorphic Egret, Egretta (garzetta/gularis) dimorpha is found in East Africa, Madagascar, the Comoros and the Aldabra Islands.

The adult Little Egret is 55–65 cm long with an 88–106 cm wingspan. It weighs 350–550 grams. Its plumage is all white. It has long black legs with yellow feet and a slim black bill. There is . In the breeding season, the adult has two long nape plumes and gauzy plumes on the back and breast. The bare skin between the bill and eyes becomes red or blue. Juveniles are similar to non-breeding adults but have duller legs and feet. The subspecies garzetta has yellow feet and a bare patch of grey-green skin between the bill and eyes, whereas nigripes has yellow skin between the bill and eye and blackish feet.

Little Egrets are mostly silent but make various croaking and bubbling calls at their breeding colonies and produce a harsh alarm call when disturbed.

Distribution and habitat:
Its original breeding distribution was large inland wetlands and coastal wetlands in warm temperate parts of Europe, Asia, Africa and Australia.

In warmer locations, most birds are permanent residents; northern populations, including many European birds, migrate to Africa and southern Asia. They may also wander north after the breeding season, which presumably has led to this egret's range expansion.

Colonization of the New World:
The Little Egret has now started to colonize the New World. The first record there was on Barbados in April 1954. It began breeding on the island in 1994. Birds are seen with increasing regularity and have occurred from Surinam and Brazil in the south to Newfoundland and Quebec in the north. Birds on the east coast of North America are thought to have moved north with Snowy Egrets from the Caribbean.

Northward spread in Europe:
Until the 1950s, the Little Egret was restricted to southern Europe. Over the next few decades it became increasingly common in western France and later on the north coast. It bred in the Netherlands in 1979 with further breeding in the 1990s.

In Great Britain it was rare until the late twentieth century and almost certainly did not breed. In contrast, it has for just over a decade now become a regular breeding species and is commonly sighted, often in large numbers at favoured coastal sites. The first breeding record is generally accepted as having been on Brownsea Island in Dorset in 1996, although it has been claimed that the species bred in Sussex in the 1970s [2]. There are now several colonies across southern England and the species bred in Wales for the first time in 2002.

In Ireland the species bred for the first time in 1997 at a site in County Cork.

The Little Egret nests in colonies, often with other wading birds, usually on platforms of sticks in trees or shrubs or in a reedbed or bamboo grove. In some locations such as the Cape Verde Islands, the species nests on cliffs. Pairs defend a small breeding territory, usually extending around 3–4 m from the nest. The three to five eggs are incubated by both adults for 21–25 days to hatching. They are oval in shape and have a pale, non-glossy, blue-green colour. The young birds are covered in white down feathers, are cared for by both parents and fledge after 40 to 45 days.

This egret stalks its prey in shallow water, often running with raised wings or shuffling its feet. It may also stand still and wait to ambush prey. It eats a variety of small animals including fish, amphibians, crustaceans, and insects.

At one time, the plumes of the Little Egret and other egrets were in demand for decorating hats. They had been used for this purpose since at least the 17th century but in the 19th century it became a major craze and the number of egret skins passing through dealers reached into the millions. Egret farms were set up where the birds could be plucked without being killed but most of the supply was obtained by hunting which reduced the population of the species to dangerously low levels (stimulating the establishment of Britain's Royal Society for the Protection of Birds in 1889). Now conservation laws protect this species, and the population has rebounded strongly.

Technical information:

I took this photo from a hide, in rawformat and used Adobe Lightroom for some adjustments before the edit in Photoshop CS2 as my CS3 beta expired and have not yet received the sharp version

Just white balance, crop and a bit hue
Noise reduction with Noiseware professional
Sharpening with Photokit capture sharpener

cicindela, SelenE, uleko, Dan, jaycee, dew77, MMM, garyfudge, Tamrock, stevkds, Ken52, gypsygirl58, smitha, lawhill, scottevers7, Alex99, rousettus, Evelynn has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • Mana Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1772 W: 36 N: 5597] (18598)
  • [2007-05-16 8:50]

Hi Bengt,
Wonderful moment captured. I like its flying 'skirt' and hence the title is absolutely appropriate. Very neat and sharp image. Perfect lighting and a great POV. The blue water BG allows a good contrast. Very nicely composed. Kudos.

  • Great 
  • SelenE Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2249 W: 65 N: 4205] (13972)
  • [2007-05-16 9:25]

Hi Bengt,
The pose is superb :o) The feathers look so beautiful. Well done on the focus, sharpness and exposure control. TFS

Wow! A wonderful moment captured brilliantly, great shot TFS

  • Great 
  • Argus Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
  • [2007-05-16 10:03]

Hej Bengt,
Another beauty from your French collection. This is the best portrait of a silkeshäger in breeding plumage that I have seen! Nice and sharp, excellent pose and composition in superb lighting.
Well done and TFS!

  • Great 
  • uleko Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3396 W: 172 N: 3310] (10940)
  • [2007-05-16 10:10]

Hej Bengt,
Wow, what a masterpiece! I've never seen one displaying like this before - it must have been fantastic to get such a close view! Excellent sharpness and white colour which stands out beautifully against the blue background. Well done!
Many thanks, Ulla

  • Great 
  • Dan Gold Star Critiquer [C: 113 W: 0 N: 2] (18)
  • [2007-05-16 10:45]

Hi Bengt,
Well done this photo, the moment is beautiful and details excellent.
TFS, Dan

  • Great 
  • jaycee Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
  • [2007-05-16 11:26]

Hi Bengt,

I love it! And I love the title. Beautiful capture of this egret with the blowing feathers. The white is just perfect. Fantastic look on the face - beautiful colors - wonderful details - beautiful setting.


  • Great 
  • dew77 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4432 W: 248 N: 4028] (13270)
  • [2007-05-16 12:02]

Hello Bengt,
Very cute scane:)Details on white feathers,pose of bird,BG and composition are wonderful.

  • Great 
  • MMM Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1114 W: 0 N: 2546] (11425)
  • [2007-05-16 12:32]

Hi Bengt
Excellent capture .I just love the details that you had obtain in the plumage of the bird.
Beautiful colors and BG.Also like your titleé
TFS Michel

Hi Bengt,

great catch!
Lovely feather detail. This is beautifully sharp.


hej bengt!
what a little beauty!
sharp and fine picture
with good composition
and nice pov and dof!
very good!

  • Great 
  • demeve Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 586 W: 12 N: 1682] (6165)
  • [2007-05-16 14:58]

Hello Bengt, very nice little egret putting up a show of beauty, nice soft composition and beautiful details... well done my friend..

  • Great 
  • Ken52 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 636 W: 93 N: 1243] (4195)
  • [2007-05-16 18:57]

Your exposure on this shot is perfect with excellent, true colors. Razor sharp detail and excellent pose of egret. I like the composition as well. Nice work!

Hi Bengt,
Lovely image of this Little Egret! I love the fluffy feathers, Wonderful sharpness and details, good DOF and POV. Beautiful!! TFS
Cheers Tina :-)

  • Great 
  • manyee Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3089 W: 230 N: 6774] (23770)
  • [2007-05-17 2:51]

A wonderful pose of this little egret, Bengt.
He looks just like the snowy egrets who come to visit us here in California.
Fantastic focus and excellent exposure on that white bird.
I really like the ocean BG.
TFS. ; )

Hello Bengt,
Magnificent shot!You have captured a great moment. Great sharpness and details.Good background and good composition.
TFS, Smitha.

Hello Bengt!
Another great picture, this time of the Egret species. I really like the title, it is very similar to this lady ;>
Great sharpness, DOF and compo.
Really great work!
TFS and best greetings,

Hello Bengt , perfect shrpnss and very good exposured whites , TFS and good luck.

Hello Bengt,
I like this much appropriated title and this superb picture! The movement in its feathers is beautiful and details are very good. I like this pose you captured and the water in BG makes your beautiful model stands out very well. You managed well with the exposure of the white. This is very well done with interesting notes. Thanks,

Magnifique, tout ce plumage si blanc, si clair.

beautiful photo.
the egrette are wonderful!

tfs mario

Hello Bengt
You capture the Marilyn Monroe moment, perfect title, great shot, very sharp well composed. TFS Lawhill

  • Great 
  • jack123 (306)
  • [2007-05-17 20:33]

bravo pour cette photo qui est tres belle
tu as reusis a la prendre sans cramer les blanc ce qui n'est pas evident avec l'aigrette


Hi Bengt,
An excellent shot on this Little Egret. Spot on exposure has the color and detail of the white plumage looking superb. You caught a nice pose withe the breeding plumage on display.
Well done!

  • Great 
  • Alex99 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4072 W: 133 N: 7096] (23735)
  • [2007-05-18 12:05]

Hi Bengt.
Amazing on quality and pictured scene shot. Everything have done perfectly: POV and DOF, exposure and color reproduction. Disheveled feathers are looked perfectly. I am impressed how well you have reflected all white colour tones of the bird plumage. First-class work. My best wishes and TFS, Perfect job.

  • Great 
  • jmp Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1659 W: 95 N: 2273] (8415)
  • [2007-05-19 12:07]

Hi Beng,
Yes, this is the Marilyn of birds:-) Great pose and excellent background for the lovely whites of the bird. Light is really good here.
TFS, José M.

Wow! This pretty bird really stands out nice on the watery background. I really like the plumage being blown upward as it shows the delicate feathers in a beautiful way. It also appears like the famous Monroe shot stand over the grating as the wind is blowing up her dress. :)

Hi Bengt,
excellent capture. timing wonderful. colors and action very nice. nicely composed. long information very useful. TFS
Best wishes

Hello Bengt,
An amazing moment captured with sharp details and excellent focusing.
This is one of beautiful shot of the Little Egret.
Also, lovely colours and very nice composition & POV, well presented with nice exposure!
Thanks for sharing this lovely photo.
Best wishes,

  • Great 
  • luibu Silver Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 13 W: 0 N: 54] (508)
  • [2009-04-04 14:58]

Ciao Bengt.
Grande lettura dei bianchi , bella immagine di questa Egretta . Ciao Luigino

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