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Northern Shrike - at last a close up view !
Lens: DA*300/4 Camera: K5 Photo Location: Isle Verte, Québec ISO: 100 Shutter Speed: 1/1500s Aperture: F5 
Posted By: jpzk, 11-22-2012, 08:27 PM

A very difficult bird to apprroach: Northern Shrike.
They usually start showing up around this time of the year in spite of the lack of cold/snow that we normally get during late November.
Quite uncommon but can be spotted once in a while.
This individual in the second photo seems to be a juvenile because of its yet bownish hue in some parts of the plumage.
The one in the branches looks a "little older"
Here are the pics:







Last edited by jpzk; 11-22-2012 at 08:40 PM.
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11-22-2012, 11:11 PM   #2
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Excellent
11-22-2012, 11:13 PM   #3
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Great photo's. I've only seen a couple in my life. Strange bird...look like a songbird...but more like a very small raptor.
11-23-2012, 12:39 AM   #4
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Very nicely done JP. Until last month, I had never seen one before. They are very intense little birds, just like lesmore49 said, a raptor disguised as a songbird. When I saw one it was very cold and grey outside and I couldn't get closer due to national wildlife refuge restrictions. There was also a northern harrier swooping about low to my left, so I kept having to do this constant 180-degree whip-around thing to take it all in. Great to see, lousy to photograph. Your shot is just excellent.

M

11-23-2012, 12:54 AM   #5
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Very nice shots.
They are rare over here (Holland and Belgium have less than 40 breedingpairs) but they can be seen as winterguests.

Not sure if it is my monitor at work but the first one looks a bit underexposed?


Edit:
Yes, it was the monitor. Here at hoe it looks much brighter and vivid.

Last edited by TenZ.NL; 11-23-2012 at 11:40 AM.
11-23-2012, 07:43 AM   #6
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Excellent captures. The second one especially is brilliant.
11-23-2012, 08:04 AM   #7
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Very nice captures - I've never seen one of these in the wild.
11-23-2012, 09:56 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by wildman Quote
Excellent
Thanks Wildman.

JP

11-23-2012, 10:01 AM   #9
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Very nice and the 2nd is excellent - Thanks - J
11-23-2012, 10:05 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by lesmore49 Quote
Great photo's. I've only seen a couple in my life. Strange bird...look like a songbird...but more like a very small raptor.
Thank you Les.

Indeed, shrikes are carnivorous, preying on small vertebrates and invertebrates -- it is a "songbird with an attitude" !

Funny thing they do: they will carry a "larger" prey to a thorn bush or right into a barbed wire fence and impale the prey for easier feeding.

JP
11-23-2012, 10:08 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Miguel Quote
Very nicely done JP. Until last month, I had never seen one before. They are very intense little birds, just like lesmore49 said, a raptor disguised as a songbird. When I saw one it was very cold and grey outside and I couldn't get closer due to national wildlife refuge restrictions. There was also a northern harrier swooping about low to my left, so I kept having to do this constant 180-degree whip-around thing to take it all in. Great to see, lousy to photograph. Your shot is just excellent.

M
Thanks Miguel.

We are somewhat lucky that the area where the shrikes reside this time of the year is open without much restrictions, albeit a nature preserve.
People are very comliant with the regulations such as: avoid unbeaten trails, no hunting, .... etc.

Glad you like the image(s).

JP
11-23-2012, 12:01 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by TenZ.NL Quote
Very nice shots.
They are rare over here (Holland and Belgium have less than 40 breedingpairs) but they can be seen as winterguests.

Not sure if it is my monitor at work but the first one looks a bit underexposed?


Edit:
Yes, it was the monitor. Here at hoe it looks much brighter and vivid.
Hi TenZ.
Shrikes have been slowly decreasing in numbers pretty much all over their "residences".
In your country, this could have something to do with the loss of habitat most likely?
I know that around here, in spite of the still existing original habitats for several species, the farming and urbanization sure do a great job at putting stress and pushing them "God knows where".

JP
11-23-2012, 12:01 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by slowpez Quote
Excellent captures. The second one especially is brilliant.
Thanks !!

JP
11-23-2012, 12:52 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by jpzk Quote
Hi TenZ.
Shrikes have been slowly decreasing in numbers pretty much all over their "residences".
In your country, this could have something to do with the loss of habitat most likely?
I know that around here, in spite of the still existing original habitats for several species, the farming and urbanization sure do a great job at putting stress and pushing them "God knows where".

JP
Well, the dutch wikipedia tells that they were allready scarce before 1950, only like 300-400. After that numbers declined because of intensified agriculture and what was left of their habitats became unsuitable due to recreation and some other (sorry, untranslateble for me) reasons.

I think that, due their habitat the numbers weren`t large to begin with and that the farming and the pesticides in the `60 `s allready took their toll.
11-23-2012, 07:10 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by TenZ.NL Quote
Well, the dutch wikipedia tells that they were allready scarce before 1950, only like 300-400. After that numbers declined because of intensified agriculture and what was left of their habitats became unsuitable due to recreation and some other (sorry, untranslateble for me) reasons.

I think that, due their habitat the numbers weren`t large to begin with and that the farming and the pesticides in the `60 `s allready took their toll.
That is quite unfortunate.

And this is an ongoing problem for a lot of species across the globe.

Are we logical in saving a few birds vs. trying to feed a few more people? Pun intended ... I have a tough time answering my own question.

JP
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