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Starting a Nest

Starting a Nest
Photo Information
Copyright: Jane Magen (jaycee) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2008-07-12
Categories: Birds
Camera: Canon PowerShot S5 IS, 1.5 Teleconverter
Exposure: f/4, 1/807 seconds
Photo Version: Original Version, Workshop
Theme(s): National Symbols, Bayram's Favorites-1, CeltickRanger's favorite Bird photos -2- [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2008-07-20 8:33
Viewed: 3980
Favorites: 3 [view]
Points: 84
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Cactus Wren

The cactus wren is an active, inquisitive, and adaptable bird found commonly in most Arizona deserts, making it an appropriate choice for the state bird. The female selects the nest site; the nest is often placed in cholla, but also in other cacti and thorny trees and shrubs such as mesquite, ironwood, paloverde, and catclaw acacia. Both the male and female build the nest.

The cactus wren's nest is a large, conspicuous, spherical structure usually built with dry grasses and annual plants; strips of discarded paper and cloth found along roadsides are frequently woven in. A long, narrow-sided passage into an internal chamber, as well as the thorny substrate, protects this nest from most predators, although eggs and nestlings are frequently taken by coachwhips and whipsnakes in Arizona. As with most wren nests, the nest chamber is usually lined with feathers. In Arizona, Gambel's quail feathers seem to make up the bulk of the lining (a related species, the masked bobwhite, was once thought to be extinct but was rediscovered in Sonora, Mexico, a few decades ago after biologists found its feathers in cactus wren nests and began searching for it). The female cactus wren incubates, starting with the first egg, while the male builds a new nest in preparation for a second clutch. Additional nest structures are constructed and used as roosts throughout the year. The roost nests often lack the feather lining.

Arizona Game and Fishing

The workshop shows the nest five days later.

siggi, zulfu, eqshannon, Jamesp, Argus, uleko, boreocypriensis, nglen, ellis49, bahadir, Royaldevon, Hil, jconceicao, xTauruSx, Evelynn, maurydv, vanderschelden, marhowie, CeltickRanger, fartash, Dis. Ac., Ken52, gracious, haraprasan, red45, Necipp, MMM, goldyrs, Luis52 has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • siggi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3097 W: 109 N: 12399] (52850)
  • [2008-07-20 8:35]

Hi Jane,
very nice picture. Very pure and sharp. great colour and composition. Very well done. tfs.

  • Great 
  • zulfu Gold Star Critiquer [C: 685 W: 0 N: 2] (43)
  • [2008-07-20 8:44]

Hi Jane wonderful shot of this beautiful bird with great details. TFS. Greetings,

Earth tones....I love them and there is a unique quality to your brand of "sharp". Sharp is not always the same thing from one eye to the next. There is an aesthetic quality which has no words to describe...but whatever it is you use it well here Jane...

  • Great 
  • Jamesp Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1369 W: 9 N: 6334] (18906)
  • [2008-07-20 8:58]

Hi Jane

This looks a bit like our Song Thrush - great action shot - excellent detail and pose. Well seen and captured.


  • Great 
  • Argus Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
  • [2008-07-20 9:09]

A great shot, Jane!
I like the close POV showing the speckled breast of this Cactus Wren with a mouthful of dried stems and grasses to build his/her nest. The technical features, eye-contact and BG all contribute to making this a superb image.
It's going into my favourites and I thank you for that!

Hello Jane
This is a perfect post...Theres this fantastic picture of the cactus wren with a beak full of nesting material and then the finished product in the workshop..and a really informative note to accompany it all...Its like a page from a textbook.

  • Great 
  • uleko Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3396 W: 172 N: 3310] (10940)
  • [2008-07-20 9:29]

Hello Jane,
This must be one of your best shots - I love it! Very nice POV and excellent timing. Great focus on the eye while all details are very sharp. Beautiful colours and a lovely smooth background. A perfect composition too! Great work Jane!
TFS and cheers, Ulla

Hi Jane,
Simply outstanding!! You capture the neatest shots with activity happening.. I love it..


Hi My Sis Jane,
A glorious shot of this cute cactus wren in a lovely posature:) -as usual indeed. But this time your shot is perfect in all around. The BG, clarity, lighting, composition perfect....
TFS this my der sister.
Take care,


  • Great 
  • nglen Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2883 W: 30 N: 9683] (36145)
  • [2008-07-20 10:03]

Hi Jane. This is one very good close up from you . If you dont mind me saying one of your best on TN. Good clear detail in the feathers with natural colours. A fine pose in tree with the grasses for its nest. and a shine in the eye. Stands out so well against the BG. very well done TFS.

  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2008-07-20 10:12]

Hello Jane,
Very beautiful photo with superb sharpness and details. Great natural colours, also in the BG. Very good POV, DOF and composition. Fantastic eye-contact.

Hi Jane,
you have captured a nice action of this builder who is collecting some materials.
Lovely simple colours and pretty good sharpness.
I like the pose and composition.
Well done.

Hello Jane, Perfect POV! A very nice image of this beautiful bird, great sharpness of the details and a very good exposure. Thanks!

Hello Jane,

I love this this shot.
He looks to have a very imposing handlebar moustache!
Very good details and very well composed.

I like the interesting notes and good use of the w/s to give us an update.

  • Great 
  • Hil Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 696 W: 13 N: 1407] (5035)
  • [2008-07-20 11:21]

Hi Jane

Nice capture of the Cactus Wren nest building, its certainly making a good start with all the materila in its beak.
Very nice pose and POV.
Good details and lovely earthy colours tones.


Hi Jane
Beautiful shot and composition...Nice pose good detail..
Kind regards,

Hello Jane,

Great moment.Beautiful photo of this bird.Excellent composition with good details.

Merhaba Jane,sanirim yuvasini yapan bir disi kus bu :)Kusun amacini gozler onune seren fotografin nefis,kus yasamindan iyi bir ornek.Onlarinda islerinin,ugraşlarının oldugunu belgeleyen bir kare, cok begendim,tebrikler :))

Hello Jane what a marvelous capture of this cute catus gren in a lovely posture. Great shot. TFS.
Regards, Deniz

I really like this photo. I love the strong, dynamic composition with the nice angles. I love the toning colors. I love the bird against the lovely softly variegated background. I love the action and the helter skelter of the weeds. I might have been tempted to clone out that bit of shrub on the far left. It isn't bad... just a bit distracting. Nice work.

Evelynn ; )

Hi Sister..Well done again...Perfect shot, beautiful composition and very interesting too...Your notes educational...I loved, reading to learn but honestly some time I forget all the notes....I think I am getting old..never mine, ...I am not afraid, I wish to live hundred..and stay old
Best wishes

Nice click, Jane.

Well done, Jane.
Very good moment...and excellent posture.

Wow, wonderful closeup capture Jane!
Love the beak filled with straw, it adds a great amount of interest.
Very good details, exposure, POV, DOF, and comp with eye contact.
Very well done,

hello Jane

WOW ! first thing i did i add your image to one of my themes
because WOW ! what a superb close-up shot of the Cactus Wren
starting to buld is nest, very fine POV and DOF,
i love the background's colour tones Jane,

superb and dynamci pose of the bird, excelent sharpness
and details of the image, this is one of your best shots Jane

TFS alot


Hello Jane
Very nice shot of this Cactus Wren,
Perfect details,composition and BG.Welldone my friend.

Good Luck

  • Great 
  • Ken52 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 636 W: 93 N: 1243] (4195)
  • [2008-07-20 20:39]

WO... now that's up close. Great nature shot of the little bird goin about it's business. Very nice detail and exposure. What I really like are the colors and how well the bird looks against that background.

Hi Jane,

very nice shot with exellent BG.
These bird colors beautiful with the BG.
Personally I have beeen cloned away the little cactus branches left on the picture.


  • Great 
  • Janice Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3277 W: 148 N: 6163] (18832)
  • [2008-07-20 23:00]

Hi Karen, this is the best photo I have ever seen of yours - well done. You should be thrilled with this one. How does it look on your new monitor?
And lucky you - you managed to have the eye showing through the straw - that's an added bonus. The breast patterns show up quite clearly too,

Hello Jane,
the bg colouration is so beautiful that makes the subject so outstanding in sharpness, good colour and details!
Hooray to our little friend!

Hi Jane,
A lovely capture of this beautiful wren gathering hay to build its nest. Superb composition and sharp details. Thanks a lot for sharing.

Ciao Jane,
meraviglioso momento di cattura di questo scricciolo dei cactus intento alla costruzione del nido (grandi architetti gli uccelli), eccellenti POV e DOF, bellissima la composizione per la posa con il materiale nel becco e il magnifico OOF BG, super nitidezza.
Grazie e complimenti.

  • Great 
  • red45 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2636 W: 74 N: 9091] (31094)
  • [2008-07-21 1:01]

Hi Jane!

Fantastic moment. This bird is really busy with its new nest. I like pose, eye and brown colours of main subject and BG. Good work!

Hi Jane, lovely bird in great work, perfect focus, fine details, great blurry BG and splendid sharpness, very well done, ciao Silvio

  • Great 
  • EOSF1 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1393 W: 119 N: 5267] (23955)
  • [2008-07-21 6:35]

Hello Jane, nice shot, great capture of this fine moment, very high quality image, well done again, thanks!


Hello Jane wonderfull shot! the POV and timing is perfect, good detail and moment captured best rgds Necip.

  • Great 
  • hester Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1515 W: 18 N: 3165] (11638)
  • [2008-07-21 12:09]

Hi Jane

This is a gorgeous shot, great POV, sharp and well composed. The DOF is perfect and the colours lovely. The pose and subject is great. Really stunning work



  • Great 
  • MMM Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1114 W: 0 N: 2546] (11425)
  • [2008-07-21 14:29]

Hi Jane
Nice capture.Very nice composition and good POV your subject pose is excellent .I also like that OOF BG color,it goes well with the color of the bird.
TFS Michel

Off they go, another day, another world!I wish life was as simple for us!But as Mom tells me, count your blessings!
Very well done, my dear Sister!

  • Great 
  • cako Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 485 W: 0 N: 772] (3395)
  • [2008-07-22 5:36]

Hi Jane
very nicw composition
very good sharp
well done.

hello jane,

nice moment captured here, looks like the cute little bird is busy making the nest, i liked the pov very much, well composed shot, well done,

I am taking break for a couple of weeks and hope to see your good work again when i come back,



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