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Southern Carmine Bee-Eater

Southern Carmine Bee-Eater
Photo Information
Copyright: Robin Du Bois (robindb) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 127 W: 0 N: 378] (1420)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2008-02-09
Categories: Birds
Camera: Canon 7D, Sigma 170-500mm APO
Exposure: f/11, 1/125 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): Anna's Favourites 1 [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2008-09-06 13:02
Viewed: 7607
Points: 52
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
One of the most colourfull birds found in the Kruger Park they are not often still and fly from shrub to shrub looking for insects. This image was taken south of the Satara camp.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The Southern Carmine Bee-eater (Merops nubicoides) (formerly Carmine Bee-eater) occurs across sub-equatorial Africa, ranging from Zululand and Namibia to Gabon, eastern Zaire and Kenya.
This species, like other bee-eaters, is a richly coloured,striking bird, predominantly carmine in colouration, but with the crown and undertail coverts blue.
Its usual habitat included low-altitude river valleys and floodplains, preferring vertical banks suitable for tunneling when breeding. This is a highly sociable species, gathering in large flocks, in or out of breeding season. They roost communally in trees or reedbeds, and disperse widely during the day. Nesting is at the end of a 1-2m long burrow in an earthen bank, where the lay from 2-5 eggs.
This is migratory species, spending the breeding season, between August and November, in Zimbabwe, before moving south to South Africa for the summer months, and the migrating to equatorial Africa from March to August.
Their diet is made up primarily of bees and other flying insects, and their major hunting strategy involves hawking flying insects from perch. Perches may include branches of vegetation or even the backs of large animals, such as the Kori Bustard. They are attracted to wildfires because of the flushed insects, and are often seen circling high in the air.

nglen, jrobertop, tiobibi, manyee, bobair, jaycee, techranger, ramthakur, Seabird, cicindela, PaulH, soccer, Miss_Piggy, amanengone, chrisruth has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To chrisruth: Hi Chrisrobindb 2 12-29 05:49
To PaulH: 170-500robindb 1 09-09 06:02
To bobair: Bird Posturerobindb 1 09-06 22:22
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • nglen Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2883 W: 30 N: 9683] (36145)
  • [2008-09-06 13:05]

Hi Robin. Now this is some beautiful looking bird . The colours are fantastic and you have captured the with a natural look. Fine detail and good use of the light. very well done TFS. Interesting notes too.

Hello Robin.
Wonderful bird with extraordinary coloration!!
Excellent sharpness and details.
Very good luminosity and perspective.
I liked this framing!
Thanks for sharing!
José Roberto

  • Great 
  • EOSF1 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1393 W: 119 N: 5267] (23955)
  • [2008-09-06 13:19]

A beautiful bird and a great capture! Sharp and clear image, beautiful light and great exposure, well done Robin, thanks!


  • Great 
  • efsus Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 415 W: 11 N: 843] (3947)
  • [2008-09-06 13:36]

Merhaba Robin,

Bizim ülkemizde gördüğümüz arıkuşları da oldukça güzel ancak bu renklerde arıkuşlarını pek göremiyoruz. Çok güzel bir kare olmuş. Elinize sağlık. Başka karelerinizde görüşmek dileği ile.


Hi Robin,
great shot with beautiful colors and great bg.
Very good POV and composition. Sharpness is ok.
TFS Tatjana

  • Great 
  • manyee Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3089 W: 230 N: 6774] (23770)
  • [2008-09-06 13:58]

What beautiful colors on this bee-eater, Robin.
You captured them very nicely, and well-shown against the clean and blurred BG.
Lovely shot. TFS. : )

  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2008-09-06 14:06]

Hello Robin,
An ideal portrait of this Southern Carmine Bee-eater. Very beautiful light and colours. Excellent sharpness and natural pose. Very good composition and POV.
Kind regards,

Nicely spotted and captured, Robin.
I believe this Southern carmine bee-eater isn't quite as common as its peers in Kruger. I haven't spotted it at all.
I remember very well the 'shrub to shrub' event:-). As a photographer, you have to act calmly and be patient.
Thanks for sharing

Hi Robin,
this is an attractive bird and one I would love to someday see with my own eyes.The colours it has are very nice and the catch light in it's eye brings it to life,catch light is so important if you want to make the subject look alive.The pose is classic bird posture as most birds place themselves to the side to see better as with most non predators,rodents etc..do.Predators like we humans have forward facing eyes and have to turn our heads in a more direct gaze to see what is about,birds mostly do not.The details are good and I like the way those wispy feathers that curl up from it's breast touching the wing.Nicely exposed and thank you for sharing this bird with us. Bob

  • Great 
  • GaryT Gold Star Critiquer [C: 102 W: 7 N: 236] (160)
  • [2008-09-06 16:14]

I like the delicate colors and subdued lighting in this. Gary

  • Great 
  • jaycee Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
  • [2008-09-06 16:26]

Hi Robin,

This has to rank up there with the world's most beautiful birds. You show him off beautifully in this fine photo. Excellent pose, magnificent colors, superb details of the face and plummage. I love the feathers flowing over the wings.


What an extremely colorful bird and beautiful capture. The very plain twig and background shows him off even better... TFS

And also thanks for your very informative notes.


A beautiful Bee Eater, Robin. Its colours are really very charming. The Bee Eaters we find in north India are not all that rich in colour.
Your picture is technically perfect. Sharp focus, vivid details and rich colours. The plain neutral BG enhances the appeal of the main subject.
Thanks and regards.

Hello Robin,

Not home, only marking.

Hi, Robin,

what a beauty!! this is certainly one of the most beautiful birds I have ever seen. very nice colours, details and compositon. tfs.

Man Yee

Merhaba Robin,rekleri ve çekimi ile çok güzel bir kare,ellerine sağlık

Hello Robin!
I shoudl do this some time ago, but all the time is a luck of time... Anyway, finally I am in your gallery for a little longer :)
Great capture of this bee-eater. I like natural warm light and wonderful colours. It must be a very special moment to see so colourful bird in o dry landscape of S Africa :)
TFS and best greetings from Poland,

Hi Robin,
Great capture and beautiful colors..
The BG,POV and DOF are superb..
Very well done.
Best wishes.

  • Great 
  • PaulH Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1137 W: 26 N: 3879] (13882)
  • [2008-09-07 10:01]
  • [+]

Hi Robin,
i ahve the 170-500 too, but this is much better than anything i have managed to get so far bird wise. Excellent DOF and framing, great shot!


The BG and DOF in your pic are excellent. It lends more detail to the subject and along with the sharpness and detail shown of the subject, you have posted a real winner here. I really like these birds but dont always get to capture them very easily.

Hello, Realy very colorful bird and shot.

  • Great 
  • foozi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 2791 W: 0 N: 6696] (25839)
  • [2009-02-19 4:38]

Hi Robin,
really a great shot., excellent capture of the colours and pose. the beauty is brilliant. Well composed in highly skilled shot.


great capture, TFS Ori

Hallo Robin
I am very jealous and envy you for this lovely image. The colours and details captured on this Bee-eater is absolutely striking and very eye-catching. I will surely be on the outlook for them when we are in the Satara area this year during our vacation in October. The combination of soft colours on the plumage, in contrast with the pitch black beak, eye and the stripe through the eye is really beautiful. Great point of view, well focused and really sharp, what more can one asks for? It was a real pleasure to stop by this beauty. Thanks for sharing. Best regards.

Hello Robin.

Lovely photography from the Southern Carmine bee-eater.

Very good point of view as well as composition from the photography. The sharpness is very good on the bird and we can appreciate all the details. The background is properly adapted to the topic.

Great photography;well done.

Hope to see you soon on treknature for other photographies.

All the bets.


Hi Robin

This is a beautiful picture of the Carmine Bee Eater.
Funny enough I was watching a nature program today about a tour in Namibia and i also saw one of them.

Lovely composition, POV, sharp details and beautiful colours:)
I must say I am very jealous of people like yourself as I have never been in the Kruger and my in laws have just come back from there last week.

I will definitely be changing that in the very near future...


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