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Black swan

Black swan
Photo Information
Copyright: Michael Halliday (pompey) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 144 W: 4 N: 746] (2774)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2005-03-19
Categories: Birds
Camera: Canon EOS 300 D, Canon EF 75-300/4.0-5.6 III, Skylight
Exposure: f/6.3, 1/320 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): Swans [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2005-03-24 14:34
Viewed: 4813
Favorites: 1 [view]
Points: 28
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Black Swan
Cygnus atratus

There are seven species of swans in the world, all pure white except for the Australian Black Swan and the South American Black-necked Swan. The first European to see a Black Swan is believed to be the Dutch sailor Antonie Caen who described the species during his visit to the Shark Bay area in 1636. Later, the Dutch explorer Willem de Vlamingh captured several birds on the Swan River, Western Australia in 1697, but many people in Europe did not believe him, as at that time it was believed that all swans were white. Three of the captured birds were taken to Batavia, where they lived for some time. However, the species wasn't reported again until the arrival of the 'First Fleet' in 1788. The Black Swan was first described scientifically by Dr. John Latham in 1790.
The Black Swan is black with white wing tips and a red bill. It is a large waterfowl, weighing about 6 kg (males are usually larger than females) and with a wing span of almost 2 metres.
Black Swans, like other swans, have very long necks. They can therefore reach deeper into the water than other waterfowl, so they can feed on vegetation in deeper water than most ducks. They feed entirely on aquatic vegetation, including algae.
Interestingly, swans have over 20 vertebrae in their necks (the exact number depends on the species) while mammals such as the giraffe only have seven. This large number of vertebrae provides great flexibility in their necks.
The breeding season in the Black Swan is usually in winter-spring in southern Australia and summer in northern Australia. In the arid inland, they will nest after heavy rains. Throughout their breeding range, breeding can occur at any time of year if conditions are suitable.
They build a nest on islands or in vegetation in the water. They usually lay 5 or 6 eggs, but nests can contain as few as three or as many as ten eggs. Both parents share in incubation of the eggs, which takes about 40 days.
Photographed at the Wildfowl and Wetland Trust, Arundel, Sussex.

AdrianW, sAner, elroyie, PDP, JeanMichel, milloup, wideload, ellis49, marhowie, liquidsunshine, sandpiper2 has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

Nice shot! You've captured this Black Swan nicely. Black and white birds are always a problem and you've kept the exposure biased correctly IMO - you're just slightly over on the white patch on his body, but the blacks are showing plenty of detail which is the important thing here. Sharpness is good, and DOF is nicely controlled. About the only thing I'd suggest is rotating it about 3.5CW since it feels a little rotated to me, of course it's hard to say for certain on that ;) Anyway, good capture and a useful note too :-D

Great picture, great composition and very good exposure, you dealt well with the black colours.
Great note.

  • Great 
  • PDP Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor [C: 2821 W: 344 N: 3779] (11769)
  • [2005-03-24 16:45]

Hi Michael. I think this is excllent, one of your best. I love the way the light has enabled you to catch all the details in the black pluamge. You have hanldled everything very nicely. I agree with Adrian about the rotate. Lovely photo, well done.

  • Great 
  • livios Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2150 W: 319 N: 4263] (16942)
  • [2005-03-24 17:30]

Michael, perfect sharpness and very nice composition; pose is great too, as well as background.

Very interesting note, Michael, illustrated by a beautiful photo. Tack sharp, very good exposure and colors. The light is very well catched on the feathers, giving precise details. I also agree on the cw levelling.

Beautiful capture of this graceful bird, excellent details in the blacks, good sharpness, DOF and POV.

Hi Michael, well controlled exposure, which shows excellent detail in the blacks, good DoF isoloates the swan nicely from the background and focus is spot on. Well captured and thanks for sharing.

Beautiful picture Michael.
The exposure of the black ia perfect, I can see all the details. Very good compostion, detrails and colours.
Great work.

  • Great 
  • sAner Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1455 W: 74 N: 1426] (4750)
  • [2005-03-25 3:28]

Excellent capture! This is really good. Great composition, good POV & DOF. TFS!

Great shot, perfect details and colours.
well done.

Great shot Michael,
Perfectly exposed for the blacks, great composition. A very sharp, clear image. Great job
Thanks for posting

He/She looks a bit vain to me, looking at itself in the water ;) Very nice shot, love the contrast of the red beak and black body.


Excellent shot Michael! Superb details seen in this black plumage with great light. Excellent notes - Very well done!!

Congratulations, you've captured this one very well. These guys live on the lake close to me and I have tried on a number of occasions to get a decent shot - no luck. And here you are capturing this species to perfection, well done. This is a really good image.

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