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Skomer Puffin

Skomer Puffin
Photo Information
Copyright: James Parker (Jamesp) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1369 W: 9 N: 6334] (18906)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2007-07-08
Categories: Birds
Camera: Canon EOS 1Ds MkII, Canon EF 300mm f2.8 USM IS
Exposure: f/6.3, 1/640 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): TN Favourites [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2008-09-04 7:22
Viewed: 5332
Favorites: 2 [view]
Points: 48
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
It has been a pretty dismal day here - I drove into Peterborough and back and had to have my headlights on, it was raining so heavily. This shot is a reminder of better weather.

NB The orange on the puffin's body is the reflected colour of its feet.

Skomer is home to one of the most spectacular and accessible seabird colonies in Europe. Gulls, puffins, guillemots, razorbills and Manx shearwaters are just some of the birds you can see in season along with a range of other birds, insects and small mammals including the prolific but elusive Skomer vole. The islands unique status is recognised by its designation as National Nature Reserve and a Site of Special Scientific Interest.

Puffins are the island's best known residents, nesting in burrows on the turf on the island's cliff top. Bear in mind if you're heading out to Skomer that the Puffins have mostly departed by mid-Summer.

On the cliffs there is a wide variety of seabirds including Razorbills, Guillemots and Kittiwakes. Herring Gulls and Great Black-Backed Gulls nest on rocky outcrops, with the lesser black-backed gulls on the plateau.

The island has an internationally important population of Manx Shearwaters. Feeding at sea by day, they return to their nests in rabbit burrows at night. The birds make a huge noise with their raucous coughing calls as they fly in to the island.

Skomer is also one of the best places in the British Isles to see grey seals - they can be seen on rocks at low tide throughout the year, especially near the Garland Stone. From late August to October the female seals come ashore to have their pups.

In spring and early summer Skomer has some of the best wild flower displays in western Britain. Spring sees an eye-popping bloom of Bluebells carpet large sections of the island. Island vegetation is shaped by wind and salt, manured and trampled by seabirds, and grazed by thousands of rabbits. Red Campion flourish in sheltered areas, with thrift and sea campion on the clifftops.

The sea surrounding Skomer and the Marloes peninsula is also part of the Skomer Marine Nature Reserve. While the island of Skomer itself is run by the Wildlife Trust of South and West Wales under a lease from the Countryside Council of Wales, the Marine Nature Reserve is one of only three in Wales and is managed directly by the CCW itself.

Adanac, Argus, uleko, Alex99, jrobertop, jaycee, vanderschelden, nglen, horia, Juyona, boreocypriensis, rousettus, Royaldevon, rcrick, Dis. Ac., gracious, haraprasan has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • Adanac Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1273 W: 1 N: 6188] (21378)
  • [2008-09-04 7:35]

Hello James,
The colors and markings of this species are always a treat and here you have captured them superbly. Thank you James.

  • Great 
  • Argus Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
  • [2008-09-04 7:37]

Hello James,
A superb capture of a Skomer Puffin, reminding me of the time I was there over 30 years ago! Lovely colour contrast against a fine blue sky and nice pose.
I was there at the end of May when the Lesser Black-backed Gull were nesting in an ocean of bluebells. There were lots of Puffins, Kittiwakes, Razorbills and Guillemots. A great place to remember and thanks for the reminder!

  • Great 
  • uleko Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3396 W: 172 N: 3310] (10940)
  • [2008-09-04 7:52]

Hello James,
I always wanted to see a Puffin but I doubt I ever will. I wonder if they still come to Lundy Island? But I do love seeing them portrayed and this is a lovely view of one from a fine POV. Excellent sharpness and beautiful colours against the blue sky.
TFS and regards, Ulla

  • Great 
  • Alex99 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4072 W: 133 N: 7096] (23735)
  • [2008-09-04 8:58]

Hi James.
I like pictured scene a lot. All captured objects and its combination re amazing. Of course the most impressive object is wonderful bird. Exposure, colours and lights, 3D-effect, POV and composition are the best too. Bravo . Well done.

Hello James.
Great capture of this exuberant bird!
Excellent coloration, details and sharpness.
Pleasant composition, very interesting POV.
Well done!
Josť Roberto

  • Great 
  • jaycee Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
  • [2008-09-04 9:09]

Hi James,

I have a dream - to see a real live Puffin one day. This is wonderful - colors, clarity, pose, setting, composition - all fantastic.


Hello James,
Thinking about Puffins and the United Kingdom's islands, I automatically go to the Farne islands:-). If I'm not mistaken you've already been there. You've been everywhere:-).
About the image...good you mentioned the reflected colour issue.
Thank you for the image and the accurate Skomer info.

  • Great 
  • nglen Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2883 W: 30 N: 9683] (36145)
  • [2008-09-04 9:31]

Hi James. It looks as if it was just stood there for you showiing off his good side. I wonder why nature gave them such a colourful beak. Good detail and bright colours. TFS.

  • Great 
  • horia Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2158 W: 224 N: 4749] (16656)
  • [2008-09-04 9:34]

Hi James

Definitely a much weather here :))
Sorry to hear you have to deal with such condition and from what Paul told me, it was more or less the same all summer. I hope you'll have a better one next year.

This is a gorgeous shot of this cute puffin. The details are exceptional and the colors are superb! I also like the lower POV that gives the puffin that lovely BG.
By the way, i still hope that one day (maybe even next year, if not in 2) we can go to that island not far from you and see them in their natural habitat.

Anyway, beautiful work!
Bravo and TFS

  • Great 
  • Juyona Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor [C: 2232 W: 10 N: 2971] (16891)
  • [2008-09-04 10:08]

Hola James,
preciosa captura,
fono pov, y bellos color y enfoque,

  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2008-09-04 10:45]

Hello James,
Very beautiful photo in wonderful clear colours and great sharpness. Excellent POV and composition. Fantastic blue BG.
Kind regards,

Hi James, what a beauty! Great shot in all around my friend!
Many thanks for sharing this beauty.


Hello James
great capture for this colorsful sea-bird. Superb colors and sharp details, POV and composition also great. good notes always
TFS, best wishes

  • Great 
  • joey Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1739 W: 224 N: 6872] (24909)
  • [2008-09-04 13:56]

Just brilliant!
A fantastic quirky shot of this Puffin :-)
Very good sharpness.
Nice saturated colours.
Excellent composition.

Very well done,

Hello James,

Aren't puffins wonderfully coloured! No wonder they are called the clowns of birdland!

This is a fine shot, capturing all the details of colour and texture.
Good composition against a lovely blue sky.

Kind regards,
Bev :-)

  • Great 
  • Mana Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1772 W: 36 N: 5597] (18598)
  • [2008-09-04 20:02]

Hi James,
Wonderful shot of this great looking Puffin against the clear blue sky as BG. Very impressive sharpness and colours and I like your chosen POV to portray it. Very nicely composed too. Thanks for sharing this image.

Hi James,

O.M.G this brings back some old memories, when I started out in television in Jersey many years ago, one of my duties was to operate Puffin for "Puffins Birthday Greetings" on Channel TV, aghhh the things we do to get ahead in life, excellent shot, superb colours, really stand out well against that perfect blue sky, worth a green smiley and fifty more for the memories, thanks :)

Cheers Rick ...

Hi James.
I just yearn to see some of these one day. This shot is quite spectacular! Never have I seen one in this stance, in as many images I've viewed.
Impressive composition.

hi James,

great shot from this bird in a beautiful pose.
Beautiful coloured picture.


Hello James,
Thank you for sharing this beautiful image of the Puffin standing proud of it's own!
I loved the reflection of colour from it's feed on the plummage!
well done

Hi James,
A nice capture of this beautiful puffin bird. Very well composed shot with sharp details. Thanks a lot for sharing.

  • Great 
  • gannu Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 988 W: 4 N: 3277] (14761)
  • [2008-09-05 19:35]

Hello James, I am not sure whether we have such birds in our country. This is a well timed and well focused shot. Perfect colors and superb clarity shot. Good work /Ganesh

Hi James,
It seems you guys have had a horrible summer. Hopefully you guys are more spared during the fall season.
I always love the photos of the puffins. They have this sweet innocent expression and also a little clown like expression. This one posed perfectly for you, with a nice side profile. Your low POV or its high POV gave the photo a other type of dimension and made it look big. The clear blue sky allowed for clear edges and wonderful exposure.

Hello James,
This is one of my favourite bird, You have shot it in an unorthodox way and I just loved it.
Thank you for sharing it with us.

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