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The Aggressor!

The Aggressor!
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: 2004-12-20
Categories: Birds
Camera: Canon EOS 300D, Sigma 170-500mm APO, Digital ISO 100, Skylight
Details: Tripod: Yes (Fill) Flash: Yes
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): 50 points or more - 50 puntos o más, Just Missed Shots., 5 favs. and up - PART 2 [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2005-01-11 5:11
Viewed: 6735
Favorites: 6 [view]
Points: 56
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Pound for pound, this is one of the most aggressive beings I have ever seen. Nothing is safe around him. He was chasing away birds that were probably more than 20 times his size (Excluding the tail :)) and doing so all day long!

This is a Pin-tailed Whydah (Roberts: 860)
A seedeater in which the male has a spectacular long tail and handsome black and white plumage. Size 12cm (female) 34cm (breeding male) - smaller in build than Cape Sparrow - but the males have a very long tail. Afrikaans: Koningrooibekkie.

The male is very distinctive, with it's bold black and white plumage and very long tail. The bill is short and conical and is bright red in breeding males and dull red in females. The legs and feet are blackish-grey. The male has a black crown, face, back and long tail feathers pitch black. The lower head, nape, throat and underparts are white, as are the rump and undertail coverts. The central four tail feathers are very long, and slender.

The female has a short tail and is generally brownish in appearance. The head is striped with black and pale brown (buff). The underparts are off-white or buffy, with some brown streaks on the flanks.

This is a common species of gardens, parks farmland and bushveld. The male is much more conspicuous than the female and is often seen perched on telephone wires or fences. It is an aggressive bird and will chase other birds at feeding tables. The male displays in a hovering flight above the female, in which it flicks it's tail up and down and calls continuously.

The call is a rather high-pitched, sustained squeaky sounding si swirt sweeu see sweep swip tsik tseet - Meaning "what the @#$^&(&% is that bird doing in my teritory again!"

The Pin-tailed eats mainly seeds, but also insects.

The Pin-tailed Whydah is a parasitic species, most often laying it's eggs in the nests of the Common Waxbill, but also Bronze Mannikin, Orange-breasted Waxbill and others. It breeds in the summer months, when the host species are breeding.

The camera settings:

Program Setting: Aperture Priority
Focal Length: 500mm
F Stop: F/14
Shutter Speed: 1/160sec
ISO: 100
Tripod: Yes
Flash: Diffused Off Camera ETTL.
Reflective Panel: No
Cable release: No
White Balance: AWB

Callie, gerhardt, cafecrem, ellis49, Nico, willie, rlortie, red45, Midi, coasties, christophe, Lourens, marhowie, Luc, liquidsunshine, scottevers7, carper, deud, JeanMichel, nofer, Annalise, nardophoto, banaei_nikon has marked this note useful
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Add Critique [Critiquing Guidelines] 
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To coasties: Fantailjapie 1 01-12 01:36
Congratulationswillie 1 01-11 09:40
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Critiques [Translate]

Wel My mond hang oop!!!
Vnery good image, these guys are extremely difficult to nail, although they will try to nail every other bird - espesally if you want that loooong tail in as well. Japie, this is excellent, and you could not get a better perch! 10/10 en dan nog!

Nou het jy twee monde wat oop hang... :D

The compo is superb, Japie. You cannot get it better to get this bird shown in all it's splendour. Set of against the nicest BG. I have a lot of shots of it but not one remotely close to this masterpiece. Well done.

Just wonderful! A birdlike monument at the sky... Great idea, super photo!

Great image Japie.
Exposure, sharpness and pose are excellent.
Great work.

Congrats to the 4000 point, well-earned.

  • Great 
  • Nico Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 199 W: 1 N: 335] (1321)
  • [2005-01-11 8:10]

A most striking photo Japie. Clean lines (tail and tree) that point to the important little face... and then it lookes straight at you. Great colour. Really artistic, wish it was my photo.

  • Great 
  • Okan Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 104 W: 57 N: 68] (518)
  • [2005-01-11 8:17]

My god what a tail! You've done an excellent job Japie, I'm very impressed.
Clean, sharp and colorful, background is perfect. Congradulations!

Only one critism Japie, You beat me to posting the shot I got this last weekend. Now I'll have to wait a bit 'cause your shot is stunning. I had a lot of fun watching the " king sixie". He is a demon. Not even a dove stands a chance against his pit bull spirit.
I'm going back for a better shot, this time one where he dive bombs another bird. Watch this space

The perch parallel to the tail is a very good composition. The overall quality of this shot is excellent: superb quality of sky color, details and DOF.

  • Great 
  • red45 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2636 W: 74 N: 9091] (31094)
  • [2005-01-11 8:43]

Poor bird, if his tail get dirty it will be dirty till his death :-) Loooooooooooong! Excellent, saturated sky and great composition with this long tailer. Stunning shot Japie!

  • Great 
  • Midi Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 146 W: 24 N: 183] (2418)
  • [2005-01-11 9:24]

Very nice shot Japie. Colors of this bird are so nice. You say: flash? but the distance was not too big?

A stunner Japie. Background, pose, perch and bird are 11 out of 10. Does it's tail hang straight all the time or can it fan it like a peacock? Great composition presented very nicely. TFS

That want you that I say, there is not anything to say and this sky blue!!!
In a friendly way Christophe

Excellent image, Japie! Perfect. Superb! Ek stem saam hierdie outjie het regtig 'n "klein mannetjie" sindroom!

Japie, Seems your subject has co-operated with a perfect pose along with this deadwood branch at such an opportune angle. And the clear blue BG takes it over the top. This is a favorite! Excellent!!

  • Great 
  • Luc Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1835 W: 301 N: 4287] (14767)
  • [2005-01-11 16:52]
  • [2]

A great and long post, Japie.
And a painted bill...
I see stange things on that perch, even the head of an eagle. Nice sculpture with a bird on it! ;-)
A great-great post.

Awesome shot Japie. This is the first of my favorites. He looks so majestic up there. 10/10

Just a superb photograph! The sharpness and color are great.

Wauw Japie,
Very good capture with this lovely bird.
Fantastic pof, great dof and ofcoarse a big note, I like it a lot, very good job Japie

Composition: *****
Sharpness: ****
Color: ****
DOF: ***
POV: ****

Just perfect.
Well done.

  • Great 
  • deud Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 438 W: 11 N: 534] (2540)
  • [2005-01-12 4:59]

nice diagonal composition. great sharpness and details. good background. excellent work

  • Great 
  • mumek Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 104 W: 0 N: 180] (853)
  • [2005-01-13 17:31]

Perfect composition with excellent background.
Very colorful capture.Beauty!

Excellent Japie !
Great shot, I like the sharpness, the colours and espacially the lines of the tree and the tail, very nice done !

WOW!!! Bird beauty plus the framing, plus just a blue sky behind are wonderful, Japie. The pose looking at you is superb. A proud bird on a pedestal. Great light shades on the wood. It cant be better as it is. Another favorite from you.

Very nice composition.

  • Great 
  • nofer Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1190 W: 366 N: 811] (2307)
  • [2005-01-17 23:42]
  • [5]

Muito bonita a foto. Excelente!
Bonito pássaro....

Excelent composition. Almost wolrd's record. Amazing photo and interesting note.

Wat meer kan 'n mens sę? Dit is 'n fantastiese foto! This is truly a master peace!

  • Great 
  • manyee Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3089 W: 230 N: 6774] (23770)
  • [2005-04-03 17:49]

What an incredible bird, and an incredible photo! It is so sharp. The exposure is perfect, the composition excellent.
I am really enjoying your beautiful pictures of all these (to us) exotic animals of South Africa. They really make me wish I could come and visit some day. Thanks : )

Hi Japie.
Exposure, sharpness and pose are excellent.
Great work.
Very nice shot
Well done..TFS..

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