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Calling Elvis

Calling Elvis
Photo Information
Copyright: Japie Venter (japie) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1814 W: 100 N: 1904] (5187)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2005-02-16
Categories: Birds
Camera: Canon EOS 300D, Sigma 50-500 F/4-6.4, Digital ISO 200, Skylight
Exposure: f/10.0, 1/200 seconds
Details: (Fill) Flash: Yes
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): Photos with titles of songs, Birds of Southern Africa, 40-49 Points (Chapter 5) [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2005-04-24 2:08
Viewed: 5673
Points: 44
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Here is another small neighbor of the Addo Elephant This is the Common (European) Starling (Roberts: 757)

It is a smallish, dark starling with white spots and a slender pointed bill. Size 20-22 cm - smaller than a Laughing Dove, much larger than a sparrow. Afrikaans: Europese Spreeu

The Common Starling is an urban bird, mainly of the southern parts of the country. The bill is short conical and tapered to a sharp point. The bill is yellow (breeding) or grayish. The legs and feet are reddish-brown.

The Common Starling is completely blackish or brown, with small white spots covering most of the body. In breeding plumage, the spots are smaller, and not as visible - especially on the head, and the metallic green or purple sheen is more visible. The flight feathers are edged with buff, giving the wing a scaled appearance.

The bill is longer and more pointed than other starlings, and the tail appears short. It is also smaller than other starlings.

This is an introduced (alien) species, which has colonized towns and cities in the South-western Cape , the Eastern Cape . Also occurs but is less common in the Northern Cape , Free State and parts of KwaZulu-Natal. It is a common and abundant bird, found mostly in towns, where it is likely to be seen in gardens, in parks and adjacent farmland.

In the breeding season (summer) they are likely to be seen in pairs and small groups. In the non-breeding season, it forms large flocks, which may be seen on lawns and playing fields. It has a jaunty stride, with long swaggering steps, and walks actively around on the ground.

Common Starlings eat fruit, seeds, insects, spiders and worms.

The call is a rambling series of squeaky sounds, whistles, swizzles and phrases of imitations of other birds.

They nests from September to December. In areas where they are common, the laying may be highly synchronized. The nest is a loose bowl of grass, pine needles and straw, lined with fine grass, feathers, wool and moss. It is placed in a hole in a wall or tree, under the eaves of a building or in pipes or gutters.

As promised in my previous post,here are some more bits about the Addo Elephant park:

The original Elephant section of the park was proclaimed in 1931, when only eleven elephants remained in the area - today this finely tuned ecosystem is sanctuary to over 420 elephants, 450 Cape buffalo, black rhino, a variety of antelope species, as well as the unique flightless dung beetle, found almost exclusively in Addo. Here, the evenings are punctuated by the strident howl of the black-backed jackal, and the francolin's call heralds each new dawn. Safe from relentless persecution in the past, the grey leviathans of the bush now roam in peace.

ddg, Luc, AndyB, red45, marhowie, tinman, Callie, carper, liquidsunshine, Mazer, Lesley, extramundi, dew77, gerhardt, hummingbird24, Motrem has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

Lol, I love the title... nice picture of a starling, you have caught the metallic sheen well.

  • Great 
  • ddg Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 867 W: 24 N: 1008] (5507)
  • [2005-04-24 3:23]

Félicitation Japie pour cet Etourneau sansonnet chanteur. Un reflet artéfact peut faire penser à un troisième oeil dans la gorge !!Belle harmonie de couleurs. Didier.

  • Great 
  • Luc Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1835 W: 301 N: 4287] (14767)
  • [2005-04-24 3:47]

You are an artist, Japie, but I think this one is painted by numbers ;-) I made some when I was a child.
Seriously (I will try), your Star-ling is a King on TN. Personaly, I see more Liberace than Elvis in this strong visual impact with a little bit of Frank Sinatra in the composition, but it is personal, as I said ;-)
An excellent work, friend.
Thank you.

Très belle photo Japie !
Cet oiseau le bec ouvert est vraiment très beau, surtout au bout de cette branche.
Bravo !

  • Great 
  • AndyB Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1366 W: 32 N: 1351] (3982)
  • [2005-04-24 4:49]

A very good and sharp capture.
The colours and composition are excellent.
Very well done indeed.

  • Great 
  • red45 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2636 W: 74 N: 9091] (31094)
  • [2005-04-24 5:00]

...but Elvis has left the building ;-)
I saw thumbnail and thought - wow, Japie sended another picture of exotic bird from Africa. Then I looked at picture and - bingo! - this is one of most common and annoying [not for me!] European city birds ;-) He is beautifull, very fast and loud. Great pose and details Japie, TFS!

  • Great 
  • sAner Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1455 W: 74 N: 1426] (4750)
  • [2005-04-24 5:09]

Hello Japie!

Fantastic and funny title! :) The picture is great. Razorsharp details, superb colors, great OOF BG. I especially like the purple colors on the chest. Well composed too. Great POV. Well done & TFS!


Hello Japie, Excellent sharpness, details and colors. Perfect light, great pose..Like this title and the tasteful border treatment..
Did I miss anything? ;-))

Very nice Japie.
The Starling is a very beautiful bird with the exotic plumage.
But I don't know if it will sing like Elvis, more like Mrs Miller.
Good details, POV, composition and colours.
Well done, my friend.

  • Great 
  • tinman Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 242 W: 7 N: 458] (2663)
  • [2005-04-24 10:01]

Good capture with lots of detail - well done. Tim

  • Great 
  • Callie Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1101 W: 95 N: 2610] (7555)
  • [2005-04-24 10:56]

So tussen hakkies - jou donkie lag nog al die pad na top scores toe - baie geluk.
En ek kan sien hoe sing sekere Europeers hulle hart uit - a very nice post he got for this trubute to the King. Good pose with the open bill.

  • Great 
  • carper Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1973 W: 119 N: 2582] (8439)
  • [2005-04-24 12:58]

hij is mooi Japie,
en de title very nice. Prachtige capture, goede scherpte, mooie pov. Hij lijkt wel een beetje op onze spreeuw. Erg goed werk Japie.
gr. Jaap

Well captured shot Japie,
Excellent sharpness, details, colours and pose.
I see more of the rebel....james dean here.
Thanks for posting

  • Great 
  • Mazer Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Note Writer [C: 65 W: 3 N: 34] (104)
  • [2005-04-24 18:53]

Nice capture of a STarling, i love the pose and the colours of the bird. Well done and thanks for sharing. Great note also :)

  • Great 
  • Lesley Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 297 W: 13 N: 913] (2988)
  • [2005-04-24 20:20]

Love the perch, the light, the pose, the detail...super capture, Japie!

  • Great 
  • dew77 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4432 W: 248 N: 4028] (13270)
  • [2005-04-25 2:01]

Wonderful singing starling Japie!
DOF,details,BG and composition are great.

Very nice shot, great POV and very good details.
Well done.

Very nice capture, Japie.
Really good pose and composition, lovely light and colours. Maybe the contour looks a bit PP for my taste. Good work.
Regards, Felipe.

Looking at the size of thie birdie, I'd say its an early Elvis. :) Impressive pose and POV, the colors are captured very well. Great shot, Japie. Very well done.

Wonderful and strong image, Japie. He seems happy to be singing on the tree branch.
DOF is great and details are exceptional. Well done and thank you.

A funny title... LOL
It is really magnificent this bird with magnificent colours. Very net, your bird has some charm. The composition is very successful.

Un titre drôle... LOL
Il est vraiment superbe cet oiseau avec des couleurs magnifiques. Très nette, votre oiseau a du charme. La composition est très réussie.

  • Great 
  • CTP Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 644 W: 6 N: 946] (2726)
  • [2005-07-28 14:15]

Great Capture Japie.
Nice sharpness,dof,bg,focus,frame and colors.TFS

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