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Look into the eye of the crowned one!

Look into the eye of the crowned one!
Photo Information
Copyright: Japie Venter (japie) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1814 W: 100 N: 1904] (5187)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2004-12-29
Categories: Birds
Camera: Canon EOS 300D, Sigma 170-500mm APO, Digital ISO 400, Skylight
Exposure: f/11, 1/200 seconds
Details: (Fill) Flash: Yes
Photo Version: Original Version, Workshop
Theme(s): Birds of Southern Africa, 40 points or more - 40 puntos o más, Gruiformes (Turnalar, Crane-like) [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2004-12-30 10:34
Viewed: 5115
Favorites: 1 [view]
Points: 48
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
This is the Grey-Crowned Crane. I got this in the Krugersdorp Private Game Reserve when I went shooting with Callie and Ben (he calls himself Lourens here on TN. I’m sure he does so to confuse people like me :) ).

Here is the whole crown

More about the Grey-Crowned Crane, Balearica regulorum:

106 cm, 3 ft.

3.5 kg, 8 lbs.


Balearica regulorum regulorum>/I> (South African)

The body of the Grey Crowned Crane is mainly gray. The wings are predominantly white, but contain feathers with colors ranging from white to brown to gold. The head is topped with a crown of stiff golden feathers. Cheek patches are white, and a red gular sack is present under the chin. The gular sack is similar to a wattle, except that it can be inflated. Legs and toes are black. The bill is short and dark gray.

Juveniles are generally grayish, the upper body feathers are edged with rufous, and the lower body feathers are sandy buff. The nape is brown, the face is feathered and buffy, and the crown is spiky and golden buff.

Habitat & Ecology:

Grey Crowned Cranes require mixed wetland-grassland habitats. They typically nest within or on the edges of wetlands, while foraging in wetlands, nearby grasslands, and croplands. Grey Crowned Cranes begin their unison display in varied ways.

The main vocalization is a booming call where the crane will inflate the gular sac underneath its chin and push the air out. This calling is done with the head laid against the top of the neck and then tilted back. The crane also produces peculiar honks that are quite different from the loud, bugling calls of other crane species that have much longer coiled tracheas.

All cranes engage in dancing, which includes various behaviors such as head pumping, bowing, jumping, running, stick or grass tossing, and wing flapping. Dancing can occur at any age and is commonly associated with courtship, however, it is generally believed to be a normal part of motor development for cranes and can serve to thwart aggression, relieve tension, and strengthen the pair bond.


All cranes are omnivorous. Principal foods of the Grey Crowned Crane include tips of grasses, seeds, insects, and other invertebrates, and small vertebrates. They also forage in croplands for groundnuts, soybeans, maize, and millet

The camera settings:
Program Setting: Aperture Priority
Focal Length: 500mm
F Stop: F/11
Shutter Speed: 200 sec
ISO: 400
Tripod: No
Flash: Diffused Off Camera ETTL.
Reflective Panel: No
Cable release: No
White Balance: AWB

willie, mumek, ellis49, Luc, milloup, red45, greghume, IdoTT, Callie, Lourens, saintclaude, mogens-j, Janice, rlortie, lilisegal, deud, nofer, kazan has marked this note useful
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Add Critique [Critiquing Guidelines] 
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To kazan: Thanksjapie 1 01-31 10:25
To elizemeijer: Aangename verassingjapie 2 12-31 05:25
To Callie: Eina tand.japie 1 12-30 14:24
To greghume: Your wish is my command :)japie 1 12-30 12:46
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • Midi Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 146 W: 24 N: 183] (2418)
  • [2004-12-30 10:42]

Fantastic colors, very nice shot, congratulations.
Jean louis.

  • Great 
  • willie Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1023 W: 61 N: 648] (2083)
  • [2004-12-30 10:48]

Wonderful shot Japie. Absolutely stunning.
Happy New Year and much blessings in 2005

  • Great 
  • mumek Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 104 W: 0 N: 180] (853)
  • [2004-12-30 10:49]

This is amazing!!The composition,colors, details are very beautiful.I am spechless.
Very good and interesting note.
Happy New Year to you

Beautiful shot Japie.
Great colours, sharpness and very good compostion.
Very good and informative note.
Excellent work.

Happy New Year.

wow.. hy is pragtig !!!

the colours are amazing. i want to reach out and touch my screen !!

It sounds like the 3 of you had fun ?? ;)

Beautiful. Great details and POV, good DOF and colours, a strong mug shot of this special crony of Callie's ;-))

  • Great 
  • red45 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2636 W: 74 N: 9091] (31094)
  • [2004-12-30 11:58]

Ah, yes - one of most beautiful birds. Great portrait, superb colours.

Happy New Year Japie!

Superb shot, Japie. I can't offer any suggestions for this technically perfect shot, but confess a desire to see the entire crown.

  • Great 
  • IdoTT Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 210 W: 19 N: 86] (482)
  • [2004-12-30 12:26]

Excellent photo!
Great of the bird, well captured and photoed,
the light and comp are great!
The eye is very sharp and clear like the sea!


Well, this is very nice, especially if we take the time of day into account.
I like the thight crop and their eyes are always amazing! Mooi gedoen. En hoekom het jy nie 'n foto van die leopard crawl geneem nie?
I just checked-out the WS - I like the mean oggles he throws into your direction more than the main post, but that is about the expression, as you know, not the picture quality, per se.
Pietta kom nou net hier in, sy sê die WS een lyk of hy 'n abses in sy tand het - so 'n dik, vet kies - pragtig.

Pragfoto, Japie. Sharpness and detail absolutely superb!!

Wonderful! Nice colors, details, sharpness. Excellent! Claude

Excellent portrait Japie. This is really a difficult one with both black and white, but you managed in an excellent way to show the details in all. Wonderful dof and a perfect cropping/composition make this a clear winner. Well done and a Happy New Year.

  • Great 
  • desmo Silver Star Critiquer [C: 11 W: 0 N: 6] (4)
  • [2004-12-30 16:27]

colors are great !!!!
very very good shot Japie,
nothing to add. all was known as
thank you for posting.

  • Great 
  • Janice Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3277 W: 148 N: 6163] (18832)
  • [2004-12-30 18:46]

I love this bird. If I hadn't seen it on other postings I don't think I would have believed it was real. And it grows to 3 foot! I'd love to see a baby and a juvenile on TN some day please guys... Or are there other such postings?
Great shot Japie; good cropping, but the whole picture is good too. TFS very much...
Happy New Year to you and all from NZ.

Just Great Japie! Sharpness, colors, blackground: all perfect. This is a masterpiece.
Happy new year!

Composition: ****
Sharpness: ***
Color: ****
DOF: ***
POV: ****

A great portrait, well done.
Happy new year

Since everything has already been said, I can only add two words in Hebrew used to express deep appreciation: "KOL HA-KAVOD"!!!
All the best and happy new year from Israel.

Japie, absolutely stunning image! TFS

Complete note. Smart cropping. Excelent colors. Superb as usual.

  • Great 
  • deud Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 438 W: 11 N: 534] (2540)
  • [2005-01-05 9:51]

excellent portrait. with living colours and grat details. thanx

Superbe gros plan de cette grue cendrée mâle (les 2 appendices sous la tête semble l'indiquer) !
Voici le spécimen que j'ai "capturé" avec mon appareil photo dans le Nord de la France ici.

  • Great 
  • kazan Silver Star Critiquer/Silver Note Writer [C: 35 W: 0 N: 36] (158)
  • [2005-01-31 10:08]
  • [+]

Japie, it seems that SA is trully the photographers paradise. You people down there, open your kitchens window and there it is, a Grey-Crowned Crane, or a Cheetah or an Elephant... I know, I know it's not that simple -I've been there myself- but when we have to go to the zoo to see a wildlife animal in captivity, you just drive 5 miles to see them in their natural playground!!!
Greta phot by-the-way!!!

Hello Japie.

Excellent image, very good details and colors.

Jose Luis.

Calibration Check