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David and Goliath
Posted By: Tom Lusk, 07-31-2007, 12:08 PM

or, rather, the Kingbird vs the Osprey...

I was out fishing last night and heard a disturbance- a pair of Kingbirds decided they didn't want to have ospreys for neighbours, apparently:

Even when the osprey returned bearing gifts, it was driven off:

Apparently Kingbirds take their title seriously. Despite having watched and photographed these birds a lot, I had never realized they had the red crown hidden on top of their heads. A neat way to find out!

I'd be interested in finding out which shot would be considered the best- my family is split in their opinions, and I'm thinking of submitting one for publication. Just some quick cropping and minor PP done so far - too much to work on with little time - I want to get back out fishing.

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07-31-2007, 12:53 PM   #2
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An excellent series of captures Tom as usual. Were you using your FA*300mm? They must be plucky birds those Kingbirds; we don't have them in England. I saw a couple of gulls harrassing a bald eagle over Okanagan Lake in May, but the Kingbird looks smaller than a gull. They are all so good it is very difficult to be selective. I presume though that you want to focus on the action with the Kingbird. I would hope a publication would be prepared to print a few to illustrate the story as it developed. I especially like 1, 5 and 6 of the ones that include the Kingbird as there is a sense of greater connection between the two birds.

07-31-2007, 01:47 PM   #3
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"Plucky" would be an excellent description of the Eastern Kingbird. They are absolutely fearless and intolerant of other birds, regardless of size. For a size comparison the Kingbird has about a 13" wingspan and the Osprey could be 60" or greater.

Great series Tom. You seem to be in the right place at the right time for natures little dramas. #1 and #5 would be my favorites. I have never seen the red top-knot; maybe they display it only when they are severely peeved.
07-31-2007, 02:49 PM   #4
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WOW Tom great series. 1,3,5 & 7 my favorites even harder to say what order I like them. Great work was this with the Bigma?

07-31-2007, 03:39 PM   #5
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Hi Tom. Normally I have no appreciation for bird photos, no real reason. But you have a few really nice photographs, without even knowing you can tell the story of what's going on from your photos. Some are just so sharp it's incredible, considering it's of bird in flight. Also, good compositions, no distracting elements.

#1 is kind of humerous: checking you out, I'm not scared of you...

#4,5,6 of the aerial pas de deux are superb.
07-31-2007, 04:28 PM   #6
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Tom...Great in flight to look at....
07-31-2007, 05:39 PM   #7
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Great captures! 1, 5 and 6 are my favorite from the series!

07-31-2007, 05:53 PM   #8
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I like them all Tom, but I'd have to say #1.

It's a tough decision.

07-31-2007, 05:57 PM   #9
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Beautiful shots tom ! It is hard to choose, Maybe no. 1 for me there is something I really like about it. That kingbird really looks like he is booking
(or 3,4,5or6)
07-31-2007, 07:10 PM   #10
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Tom, Given the nature of your question, I'm going to suggest my answer without looking at the other responses. First all the shots are great. The last one as a stand alone shot would be very confusing. looks like some radical new plane with forward control wings!

IMHO I would have to suggest that if I were going to submit a shot(s) for publication I would go with... humm tough choice, I guess it would be #1. Saying that I'd actually submit at least 3 or 4 from the series with the same write up. If that is what you decide to do then it would be #1,2,3 and 6. But it's hard to eliminate any.

Great job again and thanks for the pics and story. Now I'll look and see what the others thought.
07-31-2007, 07:40 PM   #11
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What a great, dynamic series. 1, 4, and 5 are my favorites. And 1 above all, methinks.
07-31-2007, 07:41 PM   #12
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Nice series Tom - I love the story line and sequence of photos. Nature is funny you would think the Osprey would just turn and that would be that.

I think my favorite is #5 the Osprey is looking right at ya and the Kingbird is captured nicely in the V of the Osprey's wings.
07-31-2007, 07:56 PM   #13
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Kingbirds = species of flycatcher, correct Tom?

We have Scissor-tailed Flycatchers down here in Texas, seen them chase off hawks and such. Must run in the family. Although I've seen titmice do that too.

Great story to the pictures.
07-31-2007, 09:50 PM   #14
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Hi Tom and thanks for posting this amazing series. As far as submitting for a publication goes, I would submit the series and see what happens,

Take care, Heinrich
08-02-2007, 07:41 AM   #15
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Original Poster
Thanks, everyone!

Thanks for the feedback. This was a fun series to photograph - taken from my boat in rough waters with the FA*300.

Matthew - I looked it up- the Eastern Kingbird is a "Tyrant Flycatcher". Seems pretty fitting...

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