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Nucifraga caryocatactes in Tatras again

Nucifraga caryocatactes in Tatras again
Photo Information
Copyright: Maciej Gaweski (maaciejka) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1127 W: 82 N: 4427] (27117)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2011-05-14
Categories: Birds
Exposure: f/11, 1/500 seconds
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2011-05-16 8:27
Viewed: 2322
Points: 48
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
This photo was taken on Saturday, during our trek through Tatras. We started from Palenica Bialczanska (980m), went throung Five Lakes Valley (about 1700m), Szpiglasowa Przelecz (2110), Morskie Oko lake and again to Palenica Bialczanska. Weather was mostly beautiful. Over 1800m, there were plenty of snow on north slopes so we had to use ice axes and crampons.
This is Nucifraga caryocatactes (Orzechowka).

Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:
The Spotted Nutcracker, Eurasian Nutcracker, or just Nutcracker, (Nucifraga caryocatactes) is a passerine bird slightly larger than the Eurasian Jay. It has a much larger bill and a slimmer looking head without any crest. The feathering over its body is predominantly a chocolate brown with distinct white spots and streaks. The wings and upper tail are virtually black with a greenish-blue gloss. It is one of two species of nutcracker, the other, Clark's Nutcracker (Nucifraga columbiana), replacing it in western North America.
The Spotted Nutcracker is a dark brown, broad-winged, short-tailed corvid. Body plumage is mid to dark chocolate brown, heavily spotted with white on face, neck, mantle and underparts. It has a large white loral spot, a white eye-ring, blackish brown cap extending onto the nape, dark blackish wings with a greenish-blue gloss, all white vent, and dark tail with white corners above and a white terminal band on the undertail. In flight, broad wings, white vent and short tail are noticeable; the flight undulating. The black bill is slender and rather long, sharply pointed, and varies in size amongst races. The iris, legs and feet are black.
Nutcrackers range from 32–38 cm in length (from tip of beak to tip of tail) and have a wingspan ranging from 49–53 cm.
The voice is similar to that of the Eurasian Jay and is loud and harsh. It is described as kraak-kraak-kraak-kraak.
The most important food resources for this species are the seeds (pine nuts) of various Pines (Pinus sp.), principally the cold-climate (far northern and high altitude) species of white pine (Pinus subgenus Strobus) with large seeds: P. armandii, P. cembra, P. koraiensis, P. parviflora, P. peuce, P. pumila, P. sibirica and P. wallichiana, and also the two lacebark pines in subgenus Ducampopinus, P. bungeana and P. gerardiana. In some regions, where none of these pines occur, the seeds of Spruce (Picea sp.) and Hazel nuts (Corylus sp.) form an important part of the diet too. The forms that take Hazel nuts have thicker bills for cracking their hard shells, with a special ridge on the inside of the bill edge near the base. If the shell is too hard, it holds the nut between its feet and hacks at it with its bill like a chisel.
Surplus seed is always stored for later use and it is this species that is responsible for the sowing of new trees of their favoured pines, including the re-establishment of the Swiss Pine (Pinus cembra) over large areas in the Alps of central Europe formerly cleared by man.
Various insects are also taken, and also small birds, their eggs and nestlings, small rodents and carrion such as roadkills. It digs out bumble bee and wasp nests avidly to get at the grubs.
Nesting is always early in this species across its whole range, so as to make the best use of pine nuts stored the previous autumn. The nest is usually built high in a conifer (sometimes broadleaved trees are used) and usually on the sunny side. There are normally 2-4 eggs laid and incubated for 18 days. Both sexes feed the young which are usually fledged by about 23 days and stay with their parents for many months, following them to learn the food storage techniques essential for survival in their harsh environment.

PaulLees, bungbing, uleko, vanda, marius-secan, siggi, pierrefonds, luciola has marked this note useful
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To Zeno: Birdmaaciejka 1 05-16 09:56
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Critiques [Translate]

hello Maciej
very good picture with great details of this beauty bird
nice sharpness and beautiful colours
thanks greeting lou

Hi Maciej,

What a superb image of this amazing Bird my friend, great detailed sharpness with impressive exposure/white balance control, lovely POV and a good posture, well done,
Congratulations Maciej and have a lovely Week,
Best Regards,


Hi Maciej,
Great shot of this bird, nice sharpness and very good details, great point of view, lovely natural colours and very well exposure,
Thanks for sharing and have a nice week,
Best Regards,

  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2011-05-16 8:46]

Hello Maciek,
Very beautiful photo of this Spotted Nutcracker in natural colours and excellent sharpness. It stands out very nice against the blurred BG, very good DOF. Maybe a bit too central in the composition, but it's a beauty!

Hello Maciek,

an nice presentation from this bird.
Good pov, sharpness and details.
Fine colors.


  • Great 
  • Argus Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
  • [2011-05-16 9:14]

Hello Maciek,
A really fine capture of a Nutcracker.
The POV is great and taken with superb sharpness and natural colours in a pleasing composition with the natural OOF bg.
Well done!
Thanks: it's nice to see a bird posting from you and a good one at that.
best regards,

  • Great 
  • uleko Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3396 W: 172 N: 3310] (10940)
  • [2011-05-16 9:17]

Hello Maciej,
A superb capture of this wonderful bird in a nice pose and in beautiful light! Good focus on the eye and excellent details and colours of the plumage.
Very well done!!
TFS and best wishes, Ulla

That's an awesome bird to shoot like that,

Well done

  • Great 
  • Zeno Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 483 W: 0 N: 1345] (10867)
  • [2011-05-16 9:52]
  • [+]

Hi Maciej,

I don't see this bird often. Youy caught it wel. Fine colours and excellent sharpness.Well done.


Hello Maciej
Impressive bird and beautiful photo with excellent composition, wonderful colours and good sharpness.

  • Great 
  • vanda Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 338 W: 25 N: 754] (3673)
  • [2011-05-16 10:38]

Hi Maciej!
Very good portrait of Nucifraga, captured with perfect focus and fine details (the eye is fantastic).
Very we4ll done my friend.
Have a nice week.
ciao! Vanda

Ciao Maciek, great capture of lovely bird, wonderful colors, good details and excellent sharpness, very well done, my friend, ciao Silvio

Ciao Maciej. Very good this bird hitten by the light to exalt the colours. Excellnt details and sharp agains the BG.


Hello Maciej,
Nice species. I my country it is known as the Mountain Jay.
Perfect focus, nice details and lovely natural colors.

  • Great 
  • siggi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3097 W: 109 N: 12399] (52850)
  • [2011-05-16 12:36]

Hallo Maciej,
Ladnie Ci zapozowal.Piekna sylwetka,bardzo ladne upierzenie dobra ostrosc i kolorystyka.Ja go jeszcze w naturze nie spotkalem.Pozdrawiam Siggi

Hi Maciej,
Fantastic capture for this bird.
POV is very nice and the sharpness is impressive.
Composition is excellent.
Thanks for sharing

Hallo Maciej,
a very beautiful capture of the Eurasian Nutcracker taken from an excellent point of view with fine details on the plumage, splendid colours, nice close composition
Best regards

Hi Maciej!
Great photo my friend! Perfect sharpness, full of details, natural well contrasting colors, good bg! Unusual but good composition!
Well done!

  • Great 
  • lousat Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6595 W: 89 N: 15659] (65489)
  • [2011-05-16 14:44]

Hi Maciej,what a magnificent pose!! And what a impressive scenary,you manage very well your camera,not easy a perfect sharpness like that whit a dark bird in a clear background like that.Vry very well done my friend,i like it!Thanks for share,have a nice day,LUCIANO

SUPER shot!!
Wonderful bird portrait
Very beautiful photo with unbelievable sharpnes and overall quality

Hello Maciej,
Wonderful image captured from a good POV with beautiful colours and great details. Well done!

Hi Maciej,

The bird is well placed in the frame. The point of view is showing with precision the details and colors of the Nutcracker. The cloudy sky is giving a good contrast to the colors. Have a nice day.


Witaj Macku,
Pieknie Ci sie wystawila ta orzechówka, poznalam dzieki temu nowego ptaka.

Preciosa especie y poco vista !
Saludos Maciej:
J. Ignasi.

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