Thursday, July 26, 2012

Photo Session with a Downy Woodpecker

1. downy on mullein-kab Downy Woodpecker on Common Mullein in my front yard 7-25-2012

Yesterday I when I was leaving to go count birds at the park I saw this Downy woodpecker on a Common Mullein Stalk in my front yard. Not wanting to scare it away, I decided to go out the backdoor instead and then I decided to see if I could sneak up on it with my camera! So, I grabbed my D80 with its 70-300mm lens and crept quietly out the back door. I slipped slowly along the side of the house until I was behind a bush and started snapping away. The little downy didn't seem to notice me at first, and then it didn’t seem to care. whatever it was after in that flower stalk had its attention more than  did. Eventually I was able to creep even closer. I set the camera on center-weighted metering and worked my way around to try to get the sun out of my lens and eyes since it was almost 11 a.m. and I was facing south!

2. downy-kabFor the next 15 minutes I snapped away, taking over 160 photos! In all that time the downy never flew off but continued to work its way around the flower stalk and up and down it’s length. I have no idea whether it was eating seeds, insects, or sap but whatever it was after, it loved it! I finally decided I had enough pictures and brought my camera back inside. When I came back out the bird was still there and didn’t seem to mind as I slipped past it and crossed the street!

3. parts fly-kab 

4. closer-kab 

5. closer-kab 

6. wide view-kab 

7. hiding-kab 

8. working-kab 

9. DOWO-kab 

10. Dowo-kab 

11. cute-kab Aren’t I cute?

These mullein plant grew wild in the front yard and are over 5 feet tall. I did not know that birds would eat them and was fascinated by this activity. You can read more about common mullein by clicking on the link below.

16 comments:

  1. What a cool find Kathie, and even cooler that he let you hang out with him!

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    1. Jeremy, it was like a little gift before I move away!

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  2. Well, wasn't he just the most cooperative little guy?! Wonderful photos, Kathie.

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    1. Carole, thank you! I was thinking the same thing!

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  3. Great photo series Kathie!

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  4. Love your pic series. The lighting is perfect. You had a great model:)

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  5. That woodpecker was very intent on the mullen allowing you to get many great shots.

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    1. Gaelyn, I could not beleive how intent it was!

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  6. Intriguing shots, Kathie. Love the subject, the light and composition.

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  7. Hi Kathie

    When I first glanced at this I thought he was on a cactus. I was really impressed by the size of the mullein and you got some nice photos of the Downey. A lovely post.

    Guy

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    1. Guy, that mullein is so tall! I am still wondering what the bird was actually eating. Seeds? Insects?

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  8. All your patience paid off Kathie. These are gorgeous photos. Such a beauty!

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    1. Denise, thank you! I was very pleased with the results!

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Welcome to my nest! I hope you will enjoy spending time here with me and the birds. Thank you for your comments. I will try to get back to you as soon as I get back from counting more birds.