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Southern Grey Shrike

Southern Grey Shrike
Photo Information
Copyright: Ivan Kruys (Argus) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2008-11-15
Categories: Birds
Camera: Canon 400D, Canon EF 300 f4L + Canon 1.4 converter
Exposure: f/5.6, 1/1000 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): Vanderschelden's favorites III [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2008-12-09 22:07
Viewed: 4264
Points: 67
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Southern Grey Shrike (Lanius meridionalis koenigi).
Swedish name: Ökenvarfċgel

On that same windy day when we saw hundreds of Red-veined Darters we noticed a pair of Southern Grey Shrikes obviously attracted to the possibility of feeding on them. They might have been nesting nearby.

Not so long ago the Great Grey Shrike was separated into two species, the Northern and the Southern and this Southern Grey Shrike occurs as several subspecies, this one, koenigi, being endemic to the Canary Islands. As there is very little difference between the sexes it is difficult to say whether this is a male or female.

They are quite common on Lanzarote, singles or pairs being seen almost anywhere one stays to look around.
This one is sitting on the top of a meter-high bush that has yellow composite flowers and has spines instead of leaves, Launaea arborescens (Compositae).

Though it looks very similar to the Great Grey Shrike it has a noticeably larger bill that is more hooked at its tip.

This was taken at a distance of about 10 metres (33 ft) with the camera hand-held. After moderate cropping and size reduction the image was selectively sharpened.

JoseMiguel, Jamesp, maurydv, siggi, rcrick, cataclysta, horia, eng55, LordPotty, boreocypriensis, efsus, sandpiper2, bahadir, Miss_Piggy, jaycee, nardophoto, nglen, cicindela, CeltickRanger, anilnediyara, zulfu, albert, Adanac, jconceicao, rousettus, peter_stoeckl has marked this note useful
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To peter_stoeckl: Season's GreetingsArgus 1 12-25 22:44
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • zetu Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 967 W: 26 N: 3888] (16941)
  • [2008-12-09 22:11]

Hi Ivan
Nice shoot, This photo is rich in details and has wonderful colors. Good job.
Razvan Zinica

Hello Ivan,
Good presentation of the Southern Grey Shrike with perfect details and composition,could have been a bit more sharp.but for the POV is very good.

Hi Ivan,
Hope you have had a pleasant time while in Spain.
A lovely presentation of this S. Grey Shrike, with a fine render of all his patterns in the almost mono-tone plumage.
Good lighting and clever approach to get this capture done.
Great work and thanks for share.
My best regards,

  • Great 
  • Jamesp Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1369 W: 9 N: 6334] (18906)
  • [2008-12-09 22:59]

Hello Ivan

A superb posting - great pose against an excellent BG with excetional detail.


Ciao Ivan,
splendida cattura di Averla maggiore meridionale, eccellenti POV e composizione con la bellissima posa in mezzo ai piccoli rami spinosi e con lo stupendo BG, i dettagli sono straordinari, fantastico l'occhio da cui s'intuisce lo stato di allerta.

  • Great 
  • siggi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3097 W: 109 N: 12399] (52850)
  • [2008-12-09 23:22]

Hello Ivan,
very beautiful shot of this little bird.
Composition with the blurred background is very good.
Sharpnses and colors are fine.
Regards Siggi

Hello Ivan
What a beauty! Great focus, detail and exposure. Lovely pose in the top of typical 'Butcher Bird' scrub.
Kind Regards

Hello Ivan

Excellent shot of this beautiful Southern Grey Shrike, the detail in the plumage is just perfect, and with the f5.6 it really sits perfectly in the bush, and stands out well against the OOF background, very nice work thanks for posting.

Cheers Rick :)

Hi Ivan
Another bauty. Fantastic, perfectly sharp image. Great contrast, perfect blured background Nothing to critique

  • Great 
  • horia Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2158 W: 224 N: 4749] (16656)
  • [2008-12-10 0:36]

Hi Ivan

Another spectacular close-up from you, my friend!
Your great lens, together with the converter plus your ability to get very close to animals and shoot handheld is a formidable weapon and keeps coming up with greater results by the day!
This Southern Grey Shrike is superbly shown here, with great details and wonderful, natural colors.
I really like your use of the very shallow DOF as well as the nice front light you've got on your subject.
Also, i think the thorny texture and look of the plant it is one...a good bonus to the scene.

Bravo and TFS

  • Great 
  • eng55 Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1256 W: 42 N: 1976] (5892)
  • [2008-12-10 1:26]

Hi Ivan,
Excellent capture of this grey shrike.Details,POV,pose of bird and catchlight in eyes are wonderful.
Thanks for posting.

Hi Ivan,
Great capture of this Shrike on a divaricating shrub.
Wonderful contrasting colours and patterns make this a striking specimen.
I visited Canary Islands as a youngster in 1967 on the ship Southern Cross,but sadly only saw a little of Las Palmas.
You seem to have some very interesting species there.
Thanks for showing them to us.

Hi Ivan Dostum, what a beauty:) An excellent shot in all around. i loved the pattern of this pretty bird..
TFS this beauty my friend.

  • Great 
  • cloud Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 497 W: 111 N: 1535] (9539)
  • [2008-12-10 2:33]

Hello Ivan,
I think that it's distinguishing photo pf this species, excelent pose and sharpness with very good light. Picture is composed very well.
regards, Pawel

  • Great 
  • efsus Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 415 W: 11 N: 843] (3947)
  • [2008-12-10 2:41]

Merhaba Dostum Argus,
Bu güzel gri örümcek kuşunun enfes bir karesini bizimle paylaşmışsın. Detaylar herzamanki gibi enfes. Çok başarılı bir sunum. Emeğine sağlık.
Hoşçakal dostum.
Best greetings.


Hi Ivan

super shot of thius handsome shrike. I really like the pose and composition on this one. That dry spiny bush and neutral background really enhance his otherwise plain plumage. Great sharpness as always.


Hello Ivan, excellet shot of this beautiful bird on a spinny plant. TFS and regards,

Hallo Ivan
You have captured this very neat, almost shy looking bird in a very close-up pose. The details are greatly displayed and very sharp and clear. I especially like the black patch of feathers that runs through the eye. It gives the bird a masked appareance. I always enjoy looking at your pleasant way of displaying your images. Kind regards and thanks for sharing.

  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2008-12-10 10:00]

Hello Ivan,
Great photo of this Grey Shrike in excellent sharpness, details and beautiful natural light and colours. Very good POV and composition.

  • Great 
  • jaycee Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
  • [2008-12-10 10:45]

Hi Ivan,

Lanzarote must be a photographer's delight! I have never seen a Shrike except in pictures. This one is very elegant with the greys and blacks. The black eye band and the wings are striking. Beautiful pose, wonderful colors, sharp details, lovely setting, and a nice composition.


Hello Ivan,
Una captura perfecta, buena composición y muy buena luz. Interesting species the Launaea.
TFS. Regards. Ferran

  • Great 
  • nglen Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2883 W: 30 N: 9683] (36145)
  • [2008-12-10 11:28]

Hi Ivan. I have so many birds yet to see i started late in life never mind its still good fun. This one has a fine shape and bold look about it. Which you have taken with fine detail and natural colours. A nice POV/DOF. well done TFS.

Hello Ivan!
This is a fantastic picture of Southern Grey Shrike, so sharp and clear! I like beautiful colours and very good composition. What to say more, this is just a great photo :)
All the best,

Ciao Ivan, elegant little bird in great pose, fantastic blurry BG, fine details and splendid sharpness, wonderful composition, very well done, ciao Silvio

  • Great 
  • joey Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1739 W: 224 N: 6872] (24909)
  • [2008-12-10 13:37]

Hi Ivan,
this is an excellent shot of this Great Grey Shrike.
Very well taken.
Superb composition.
Really good sharpness.
Superb DOF.

Awesome work!


hello Ivan

excellent image of the Southern Grey Shrike with fine POV, and framing,
excellent sharpness and details, i love the bird's pose and the image's
blurred background tones, TFS


  • Great 
  • gannu Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 988 W: 4 N: 3277] (14761)
  • [2008-12-10 20:03]

Hello Ivan, nice shoot and the lovely sharp view. Good lighitng. Ganesh

Hi Ivan,

This is a beautiful shot of Southern grey shrike. Shrikes with their back eye patch are very difficult to shoot, most of the shots ends up without eye in the dark. You have captures this bird as if in a studio :) Great pictuer of this beauty. TFS

  • Great 
  • zulfu Gold Star Critiquer [C: 685 W: 0 N: 2] (43)
  • [2008-12-11 4:21]

Hello Ivan, superb shot of this beutiful shrike. Wonderful composition and details.
TFS and G's,

Hello Ivan,
Great photo ,excellent focus with the bird well detached on a blurried BG
Well done

  • Great 
  • Adanac Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1273 W: 1 N: 6188] (21378)
  • [2008-12-11 19:20]

Hello Ivan,
Well I'm jealous, I have been try so hard to capture this shrikes cousin the Northern Shrike. They are incredible shy and I have had no luck. This image is wonderful, the colors and details your camera work has captured are superb. Thank you Ivan, great job.

great portrait, TFS Ori

Hello Ivan,

Fantastic capture.
Beautiful colours with excellent definition.
Light,focus and sharpness are splendid.
Good composition.

günaydın Ivan
I have never see this species, but very similar to Lanius minor here. Great shot and great composition among spined leaves. focus, POV/OFF, BG and eyes contact also great. Thanks for sharing with good information.
teşekkürler dostum

Hello Ivan,
beautiful, almost iconal, very well taken image of this perfectly posed shrike that stands out so well out of the thorny scrubs in its black and white contrasts against the sandy brown distant background.
With all my best wishes to you and your family for a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Hello Ivan,
Excellent work with natural colors...
An outstanding image.
No critiques...maybe I should mention the sharpening halo under the bill; saw it in extremis:-).
Nevertheless a favorite...

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