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Keen and Graceful

Keen and Graceful
Photo Information
Copyright: Wing Lee (wingle) Silver Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 35 W: 2 N: 71] (419)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2007-09-25
Categories: Birds
Camera: Canon 1D MkII N, Canon 100-400/4.5-5.6L IS, Canon EF 1.4x II teleconverter
Exposure: f/8, 1/800 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): Birds of Prey- RAPTORS (III) [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2007-09-28 10:02
Viewed: 5120
Favorites: 3 [view]
Points: 52
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
I have been trying for some time to get a clear photo of this beautiful bird of prey. They seem very wary of human presence. Most times they are about 400 meters away and during dawn or dusk when the light is limited. I was lucky this time by staying very still and keeping a low profile and got this capture before s/he noticed me and took off. Thanks for looking.

From Wikipedia:

The White-tailed Kite (Elanus leucurus) is an elanid kite found in western North America and parts of South America. It was formerly known as the Black-shouldered Kite.

The earliest name for this bird was the White-tailed Kite, and it was given the systematic name Elanus leucurus. However, it was argued that it was a subspecies of a European and African species, Elanus caeruleus, at the time known as the Black-shouldered Kite (see, for example, Parkes, 1958), and the recognised name was changed.

More recently, Clark and Banks (1992) argued that the White-tailed Kite differed from the Old World species in size, shape, plumage and behavior, and that these differences were sufficient to warrant specific status. This argument was accepted by the American Ornithologists' Union, so the White-tailed Kite has its original name back. Meanwhile E. caeruleus has been renamed as the Black-winged Kite, and the name Black-shouldered Kite is now reserved for an Australian species, Elanus axillaris, which had also been merged into E. caeruleus but is also now regarded as separate.

The White-tailed Kite was rendered almost extinct in the 1930s and 1940s by shooting and egg-collecting, but they are now again common in California. Their distribution is sporadic, however; they can be seen in the Central Valley and southern coastal areas, and also around the San Francisco Bay. They are also found in southern Texas, on the Baja California peninsula, and in eastern Mexico.

White-tailed Kites feed principally on rodents, and they are readily seen patrolling or hovering over lowland scrub or grassland. Their coloration is gull-like, but their shape and flight falcon-like, with a rounded tail. Mainly white underneath, they have black wingtips and shoulders. Outside the breeding season they roost communally in groups of up to 100.

jhm, pirate, smitha, MMM, jaycee, SMFortuna, darwin, CeltickRanger, SelenE, johnamcc has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • Zeno Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 483 W: 0 N: 1345] (10867)
  • [2007-09-28 10:05]


This is an extremely good in flight shot. Very sharp and nice detailed feathers. Great light also. My compliments.


hi wing lee
amazing specimen
a beautiful picture
great details and nice colors
aleks ;)
*best wishes

  • Great 
  • jhm Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 893 W: 0 N: 507] (1853)
  • [2007-09-28 10:12]

Hello Wing,

My compliments for this wonderful shot, what a moment and what a sharpness and clarity.
Very well done.

Have a nice weekend,

  • Great 
  • pirate Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 799 W: 152 N: 1186] (7474)
  • [2007-09-28 10:14]

Hi Wing
this is magificient!
full frame crisp clear lovely colours perfect exposure

  • Great 
  • Arjun Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 358 W: 7 N: 1237] (7593)
  • [2007-09-28 10:19]

hi wing,
great picture from you.great details in the bird with good lighting and welldone..but i think the sharpness is a bit soft on the wings....but an xcellent picture...FANTASTIC try,

Hello ,
Well your wait was worth it, what an amazing shot. The pose you caught is perfect along with the color saturation and excellent sharpness...great shot. TFS

  • Great 
  • smitha Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 348 W: 73 N: 1165] (4409)
  • [2007-09-28 10:50]

Fantastic in flight shot, Wing. Very sharp and focused with excellent position of wings and clear blue background.It is a beauty!Thanks for the share,

  • Great 
  • MMM Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1114 W: 0 N: 2546] (11425)
  • [2007-09-28 11:11]

Hi Wing
Excellent in flight capture.Good POV and nice details and colors.Very nice BG colors.
TFS Michel

  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2007-09-28 11:14]

Hello Wing,
This is a brilliant photo of this Kite. Very sharp with great details and pose. The colours are very clear and the composition is very good.
TFS, Peter

Hello Wing, splendid and impressive shot, fantastic colors and sharpness, realy good focus and lovely pose and blue sky,
well done,

Hello Fella
Theres not to much to be said apart from congratulations on your stealth and patience.
You have captured a truly fine picture.

Great shot and very nice birds and fligh, good, good.

  • Great 
  • ddg Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 867 W: 24 N: 1008] (5507)
  • [2007-09-28 11:56]

Bonjour Wing, amazing shot of this bird of pray, sharpness and colors are perfect. Beautiful profile too. Congratulations, Didier.

  • Great 
  • jaycee Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
  • [2007-09-28 14:54]

Hi Wing,

A superb capture of this Kite in flight. The position of the head, wings and feet are wonderful. Fantastic details and beautiful colors. Just beautiful.


Hello Wing,

Superb photograph! Great job!


Great capture.
Lovely bird.
Good exposure and lovely detail.


  • Great 
  • darwin Gold Star Critiquer [C: 259 W: 0 N: 403] (1401)
  • [2007-09-28 18:29]

Wonderful capture Wing
excellent sharpness,detailed
shot of this lovely kite in
flight tfs jon

Hi Wing
Excellent in flight capture.Great details and colors.Very nice back ground and perfect exposure. Great Job!!

Excellent capture with a perfect sharpness and this red eye is amazing!
Nothing to critic!

Thank you


hello Wing

great and clrear flight action shot,
i love the point of view and framing of the image



amazing, congrat

This is amazing! What a great capture! Colors, details, exposure, action caught, everything is perfect here. This is a fabulous picture and this bird is a real beauty. Congratulations!

Hello Wing!

Great photo of this predator! Very nice composition, POV and DOF! TFS.

  • Great 
  • SelenE Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2249 W: 65 N: 4205] (13972)
  • [2007-10-26 0:41]

Hi Wing,
Lovely inflight photo of this beutiful raptor. Well done and TFS
Best wishes,

great picture from you.great details in the bird with good lighting and welldone..

Exciting action, Wing. I will switch my choice to this one.


Wow What a nice and sharp photo.The lighting is great. A fantastic photo in flight... Congratulations..and thanks

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