Feathered Portraits

Last week I went to photograph bird banding again in Raleigh. That morning more than 50 birds were banded and it was such a great thing to see all these birds from so close. Let alone be able to photograph them. These were definitely portraits I loved making.



The eyes of the Brown Trasher are almost hypnotizing. Such bright yellow. The fall colors in the background are just so fitting with its feather colors too. What great bird to watch up close.


I also loved seeing the House Finch. A big beak in comparison en the pink ring around the eyes as if make-up was applied to it.


Stunning eye detail I’ve never ever seen. So wonderful to see it this close.


Even the Song Sparrow had me in awe with its portrait. Again the tiny feathered ring around its eye was so beautiful. But also liked the streaking feather pattern. Just perfectly matching the whole outfit.


One of my favorites was the Ruby Crown Kinglet. Tiny little bird but such great details.dsc_9086-2

The questioning look it gave me was so cute. Big eyes and little beak and a crown ready to be shown. Bright Ruby red on top of the head.


Another favorite was the Northern yellow shafted Flicker. The red on the back of its head and the polka dots up front where gorgeous. Big and feisty for sure and so special to up close. So fortunate to be there for sure!


These two the Eastern Phoebe and the Gold Finch were two of my very nicely posing bird models. The Phoebe perked up and loved that I could capture its beak so closely. You really can see through it. Its lighter breast is fluffed up and it makes himself look bigger. So adorable. dsc_9181

The faded yellow  on the Gold Finch was very interesting to see I think. Turning to a beige almost all over. But still its bright yellow shows on the head. So distinguished I think.


And at last the Northern Cardinal. A joy to have in front of my lens. So bright red it almost pops of the screen. I have learned that the first row of feathers on the wings which you can see very good on this pictures are known as the thumbs of a bird. They are shorter and stick out a bit.


The cardinal is not the most favorite bird of the banders I’ve learned as it is a feisty one. It will peck on you and not let go for a bit. Lots of character there for sure. But boy is he beautiful or what!

Drink in the beauty and wonder at the meaning of what you see.

~Rachel Carson

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