I visited the Bird Gardens in Monte Casino recently. Monte Casino is a big shopping, gambling and entertainment venue in Johannesburg.
This is the Greater Flamingo (Phoenicopterus ruber) with characteristic long legs and a long neck. Its habitat is freshwater lakes, salt pans, estuaries and open coast. Its call sounds like a 'honk honk', not unlike a farmyard goose.
It shows brilliant red patches in the forewings during flight. Usually it has a bright pink bill with a black tip, so I wondered why these ones had almost white bills. Some research on the internet gave me the following information about their color (and the lack of it, in this case):
1. Feather coloration is derived from carotenoid pigments found in a flamingo's food.
2. Male and female flamingo coloration is the same.
3. Newly-hatched chicks are gray or white.
4. Juveniles are grayish, taking approximately one to two years to obtain full adult coloration.
5. Parents lose their pink coloration while raising young if they are still feeding chicks through the adult’s molting period.
This is an extermely difficult bird to photograph. You have to underexpose, otherwise you usually just end up with a bright shape of overexposed white. To get some of the texture on its body I took this shot at -1.3 EV (which also explains the very dark background here).
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Galeota (10352) 2004-06-18 2:47
Wonderful shot henry, The shape of his neck makes the whole composition work perfgectly. Very good choice of black colour as a background for the contrast.
olli (2091) 2004-06-18 2:52
The same thing attracts me in this image as in your previous posting – the framing.
Flamingo is very interesting subject and I´ve seen manys shots of it – but this one is very original. You´ve exposed it very well – and the dark background makes the image even better.
I´m not a big fan of "zoo shots" – but I like this artistic and almost abstract shot very much...
manny (21833) 2004-06-18 3:17
This creature is a great contortionist. I like the way you framed this against a black BG. Your shallow DOF, I think, achieved this.
Very sharp and clear. Thanks for the exhaustive notes.
maciekda (19895) 2004-06-18 3:19
it is a nice picture Henry, wonderful pose of the bird, very sharp and detailed picture, i like this dark background too, interesting work
yesterday (9833) 2004-06-18 3:28
Excellent pose and composition, the photo is sharp and detail, splendid light and very good contrast.
carper (96) 2004-06-18 3:44
Very good photo here Henry,
Very nice colours,I like the dark behind, great image, very good job, yes this is a good one.
ninfa_urania (803) 2004-06-18 4:36
The details of the bird and their plumage are beautiful, the clarity and simplicity of the color are charming, thank you for the data of your note, I appreciate it a lot. A special atmosphere is created for the pose and the look of this beautiful bird. Cordial greetings. Excellent weekend. *Ninfa Urania*
avigur_11 (22107) 2004-06-18 5:55
BEautiful pose, Henry. I like the small areas of pink, and the pale yellow eye. Wonderful shot, and excellent note. TEh black BGis very effective.
Japie (72) 2004-06-18 6:51
I think that besides the difficulty in photographing this bird, underexposing this picture effetively cuts out the main topic from the rest of the photo and at the same time exposes all the finer detail and beauty of the Flamingo - Well taken
jhm (158854) 2004-06-18 11:48
Great work Henry, it is a nice picture, wonderful pose of the bird, this note of the White Flamingo are excellent. Well done!
nwoehnl (122) 2004-06-18 12:02
The very dark background is perfect, Henry, and the bird is enhanced even more by the way the light falls on it. Excellent cropping, and very good detail on the flamingo. Outstanding technique on this one, pulling even the most subtle textural details out of the white plumage. Very well done.
jrj (34843) 2004-06-19 4:26
Creative and very well made this flamingo pix. The texh. used to show us detail of the beatiful feathers works to the best. Great job Henry
jhonny_blue (4956) 2004-06-19 5:25
Wonderful shot Henrye !
Very beautiful colours and very good details !
Jeppe (18654) 2004-06-20 3:12
Excellent shot Henry - as you mention, this kind of photo difficult due to overexposure -but you succeded :-)
I can see from your note - the dark background not the product of a workshop - works very nicely indeed.
I also like the way this fine bird twist its neck.
cdewet (0) 2004-06-21 14:31
You said it, these "thin" birds are very difficult to frame properly. I think you did a splendid job both with the composition and the whites. The black BG is super.
Ek's terug, pap, maar dit was 'n sukes, nou moet ek net aansterk, dan kan ons K'dorp gaan doen.
- Copyright: Henry Engelbrecht (henrye) (3500)
- Genre: Places
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2004-06-16
- Categories: Nature
- Camera: Nikon D100, Sigma 50-500 F4-6.3, Digital JPEG, UV
- Exposure: f/8, 1/1000 seconds
- Photo Version: Original Version
- Date Submitted: 2004-06-18 2:10
- Favorites: 1 [view]