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I dropped it...

I dropped it...
Photo Information
Copyright: Gerhard Theron (gerhardt) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1936 W: 244 N: 4106] (11620)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2007-02-25
Categories: Birds
Camera: Canon EOS 20D, Canon EF 500mm f/4 L IS USM, Digital ISO 200, Canon Extender EF 1.4x II
Exposure: f/5.6, 1/2000 seconds
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2007-03-07 8:04
Viewed: 5921
Points: 38
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Whiskered Tern
Chlidonias hybrida delalandii

The Whiskered Tern is a seabird of the tern family Sternidae. This bird has a number of geographical races, differing mainly in size and minor plumage details.

C. h. hybridus breeds in warmer parts of Europe and Asia. The smaller-billed and darker C. h. delalandii is found in east and south Africa, and the paler C. h. javanicus from Java to Australia.

The tropical forms are resident, but European and Asian birds winter south to Africa and southern Asia.

This species breeds in colonies on inland marshes, sometimes amongst Black-headed Gulls, which provide some protection it's scientific name arises from the fact that this, the largest marsh tern, show similarities in appearance to both the white Sterna terns and to Black Tern.

The size, black cap, strong bill (29-34 mm in males, 25-27 mm and stubbier in females, with a pronounced gonys) and more positive flight recall Common or Arctic Tern, but the short, forked-looking tail and dark grey breeding plumage above and below are typically marsh tern characteristics. The summer adult has white cheeks and red legs and bill. The crown is flecked with white in the juvenile, and the hindcrown is more uniformly blackish, though in the winter adult this too is flecked with white. The black ear-coverts are joined to the black of the hindcrown, and the space above is mottled with white, causing the black to appear as a C-shaped band. The sides of the neck are white; this sometimes continues across the nape. The collar is less sharply defined. All through the year the rump is pale grey. In the juvenile, the mantle (279 mm) has a variegatd pattern. The feathers of the back and scapulars are dark brown, with prominent broad buff edgings and often subterminal buff bars or centers. There is usually an admixture of new gray feathers, especially on the mantle, quite early in the fall. The mantle is silvery-gray in the adult.

I hope you like it

vanderschelden, Tamrock, jaycee, horia, patrickb, Janice, scottevers7, mogens-j, marhowie has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]


Well capture great colors Bg POV DOF Details very crisp well done

TFS Kyle

Hi Gerhard,
It's a very good action shot!
I like so much the timing and quickness to get this tern in such a good focus, in this difficult shot due to the flight and speed of the subject.
The waterdrops hanging and the waves on the water adds a lot to this scene.
You made a great composition with all this elements.
My compliments and thanks for share it.
Best regards,

  • Great 
  • pvs Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1127 W: 254 N: 3161] (14464)
  • [2007-03-07 9:08]

Hi Gerhard,

An almost superb catch (although for the bird),I think it was something big he catched,for you this shot must have made your day,excellent camerawork,regards,


Excellent capture of a small moment in time... Nice one Gerhard

Hi Gerhard,
A beautiful image...
I like the water droplets, the wings and the vivid coloration.

hi gerhard!
great capture wirh really
good sharpness and fine pov
very well done!

  • Great 
  • jaycee Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
  • [2007-03-07 10:56]

Hi Gerhard,

A beautiful shot of the Tern in flight - and a beautiful picture. The colors and sharp details are wonderful. What timing to get that big spash.


  • Great 
  • horia Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2158 W: 224 N: 4749] (16656)
  • [2007-03-07 11:11]

Hi Gerhard

I sure hope for his sake that he finds it back ;))

This is truely a one-of-a-kind in-flight!
The pose in which you managed to catch it here is just amazing! The POV is exceptional and the fact that the motion is so well frozen is outstanding!
The details and DOF are really perfect - keeping everything is very good focus, while the natural colors are charming and very well saturated.
The exposure is spot-on, the framing and presentation are lovely and the composition is excellent.


Awesome timing Gerhard!

It looks like he's dropped a bomb or has some serious upthrust! This shot is all about timing and you have nailed it here. Good sharpness and exposure on the whites. I might have moved the bird dead centre for this particular image but no real problem here.

Nice work my friend


Hello Gerhard , very good freezing action photo , TFS.

bonjour gerhard
fabuleuse action de peche,malgres sa vitesse la sterne est parfaitement nette,j'aime aussi beaucoup les gouttes d'eau en suspention.

Hi Gerhard, once again a fantastic shot, action, frozen in time. Great POV, DOF and detail, from the feathers to the water drops.
Well done

  • Great 
  • Janice Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3277 W: 148 N: 6163] (18832)
  • [2007-03-07 14:28]

Oh NO! That's dinner gone!
Perfect timing Gerhard. I love the look of his angel wings there - all spread out and he's hanging in space looking at what was once his meal. Well done

A superb capture Gerhard! Wonderful pose of the bird, great details on the open wings. Nice DOF and colours. TFS!

Hi Gerhard,
An excellent action shot that you have frozen perfectly. The flying water droplets look great. Nice quality light. Colors and detail are really great here. Superb camea work!

Fantastic freeze frame action in this awesome capture, I love it! The detail really shows up in this one throughout the entire picture. Way to go Gerhard. You are a fantastic photographer. :)

  • Great 
  • wuta Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 855 W: 2 N: 617] (2142)
  • [2007-04-03 13:36]

Hello Gerhard , A Great action shot ,great compositie details the water drops the blue bg , very good shot ,tfs Greetings Teunie .

  • Great 
  • RAP Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2524 W: 345 N: 2373] (7405)
  • [2007-04-11 19:35]

Bonita captura en acción Gerhard con excelente punto de vista, iluminación y foco aunque se aprecia alguna pérdida de calidad en el resultado final de la presentación.
El escaso DOF y el apropiado timing permiten retratar al ave perfectamente con adecuada elección del encuadre.
Mis mejores saludos... Ricardo

Nice capture in action Gerhard with excellent point of view, illumination and focus although some loss of quality is appreciated in the final result of the presentation.
Scarce DOF and the appropriate timing allow to depict the bird perfectly with suitable election of the framing.
My best regards... Ricardo

Hello Gerhard

Normally I do not use big words but this time I have to – this is a fantastic capture. Excellent sharpness/focus with lots of details all over. Especially I like the angel-look on the wings and the droplets. Great looking and very clear colours. Very good composition with the bird out of centre. Excellent handling of the light with details both in the white and the black part of the plumage. The wings wide spread – it looks like he/she is measuring the size of the lost fish – just like every angler:-0). I would call this picrure a “second to non”. Well done my friend.

Here in Denmark the most common Terns are Sterna birundo (Common Tern in English) and Sterna paradisaea (Arctic Tern in English). Unfortunately I have never succeeded to get a proper picture of any of them.


Hallo Gerhard,

Baie goeie skoot, ek dink jy het hier 'n seker Salon aanvaarding. Wens dit was myne.


Hello Gerhard,
I and many others here would enjoy seeing your work from time to time. This image is a prime example of the high standard you set in your images. You're a hard act to follow..
And you are missed.

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