<< Previous Next >>

Yellow-hooded Blackbird

Yellow-hooded Blackbird
Photo Information
Copyright: Peter van Zoest (PeterZ) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2008-10-15
Categories: Birds
Camera: Nikon D300, AF Nikkor 70-300mm f4-5.6 G, Digital RAW
Exposure: f/4.5, 1/250 seconds
Details: (Fill) Flash: Yes
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2008-12-28 10:30
Viewed: 4406
Points: 64
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
This photo is taken in a small bird park in the Netherlands.

Oriolus icterocephalus, Linnaeus, 1766, Cayenne. Two geographically distinct forms are recognized.


French: Carouge à capuchon; German: Gelbkopfstärling; Spanish: Turpial de Agua.


6.5–7 in (17–18 cm); female 0.8–1.1 oz (24–31 g), male 1.1–1.4 oz (31.5–40 g). Sexually dimorphic in color. Males are black with a yellow hood and black around the bill. Females are grayish olive above, and have a brownish belly, flecked with black, and a dusky yellow hood, with the yellow on the throat and the stripe over the eye brighter.


Resident of northern South America and along the Amazon River, from northern Colombia to central Brazil, east to northeastern Peru.


Freshwater marshes and tall, wet grasslands. Although characteristically a bird of the lowlands, they are found to about 8,500 ft (2,600 m) in the Andes of Colombia.


Territorial during the breeding season. Males display to other males using a "song-spread" display, much like that of the North American red-winged blackbird. Males approach females with a distinctive fluttering flight; receptive females follow males to nests constructed by the males. During all seasons they are commonly seen in small loose flocks; large numbers may congregate in roosts. During the breeding season, males form colonies in marshes and start building nests.


Yellow-hooded blackbirds feed in marshes or in pastures, where they eat seeds and capture invertebrates.


Successful males mate with up to five different females in a single season. Males build a nest in emergent aquatic vegetation; the female adds the lining to the nest after the pair is formed. Mated males stay with their mate until incubation begins, then they build another nest and seek an additional mate. Generally 2–3 eggs are laid in May–October in Trinidad and October–November in Venezuela. Incubation 10–11 days; young fledge at about 11 days.


Not threatened. They are locally common.


They commonly forage in rice paddies and other agricultural lands, and cause some crop damage.

nglen, Dis. Ac., jaycee, ferranjlloret, jconceicao, rousettus, Adanac, eqshannon, zulfu, siggi, Noisette, boreocypriensis, eng55, CeltickRanger, red45, marhowie has marked this note useful
Only registered TrekNature members may rate photo notes.
Add Critique [Critiquing Guidelines] 
Only registered TrekNature members may write critiques.
ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To cuckooroller: Yellow-hooded BlackbirdPeterZ 2 12-29 02:52
You must be logged in to start a discussion.

Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • nglen Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2883 W: 30 N: 9683] (36145)
  • [2008-12-28 10:34]

Hi Peter.. Well you can see why its called that. with its bright yellow head. You have captured fine detail in the black shinny featehrs. with a nice POV against the dark BG. well done tFS.

Hallo Peter,

alweer zo'n fraaie vogel op de gevoelige plaat.
Mooie en goede detailering in het zwart t.ov. de achtergrond.
Prima foto.


  • Great 
  • jaycee Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
  • [2008-12-28 10:45]

Hi Peter,

This is one amazing looking bird! The yellow head with the black eye mask is wonderful. You managed the blacks of his wings and tail perfectly. Details of the entire bird are excellent. He seems to be looking right at you. A beautiful pose on the tree. The dark background is fantastic. The only bird I know with a call like that is our Cactus Wren. Not a nice sound to listen to.


Beautiful bird and nice photo!

  • Great 
  • cako Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 485 W: 0 N: 772] (3395)
  • [2008-12-28 11:03]

Hi Peter
Super sharp and detail
very nice colors detail
very well done.

Hi Peter,
You have had very good luck to be able to photograph a bird so beautiful & rare. Regards

Hello Peter,

Excellent capture.
Wonderful colours with fantastic details.
Light,focus and sharpness are splendid.
Good notes.

hallo Peter
een beauty
mooi dat geel met zwart
mooi plaatje

groetjes lou

Hi Peter,
Blackbird with yellow head is very beautiful. Its shot also great with splendid coloration, sharp details and eyes contact. Dark BG and composition very nice. Thanks for sharing, best wishes

Hi Peter,
Well, this is certainly made tougher by having found it in a bird park, rather than in a normal geographical context.

However, the ID is wrong.

To note: the small black mask extends in back of the eye a small distance(in Xanthocephalus), rather than finishing right at the posterior margin of the aboral ocular canthus (as here); no white showing on the wing edge; the relative shortness of the tail; the "cut" of the yellow on the margin with the mantle and the shoulder. All of these above considerations allow us to eliminate Xanthocephalus.

Agelaius icterocephalus (Yellow-hooded Blackbird).

Hello Peter,
Very nice capture, beautiful vivid colors and excellent contrast, good sharpness and depth of field, very nice pose.

  • Great 
  • Adanac Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1273 W: 1 N: 6188] (21378)
  • [2008-12-28 17:22]

Hello Peter,
Splendid plumage detail and wonderful bright yellow head. Looks very similar to our Yellow-headed Blackbird. Your fill flash sure helped to isolate the black plumage from the dark background. Great work Peter and seasons grettings to you and yours.


Thanks for you comments on my last posting and thanks for you continued support throughout the year! I am glad you find my work interesting.
This is a very good shot Peter. I like the eye contact you captured here along with the pose. I always found black birds (of any kind) extremely hard to photograph as the black feathers would just blend into one big black object. I guess in this case the flash did its job. Everything is nicely visible. Very nicely done.

Best Regards,


This one surely stuck right out in small thumbnail..and I love it more in full sized....Wonderful image Sir Peter!

Hello Peter

A lovely capture of this beautiful yellow-hooded blackbird.
The plumage detail shows well,even the black feathers are well defined.
Good use of light.
The POV is really good.
Great job.


  • Great 
  • zulfu Gold Star Critiquer [C: 685 W: 0 N: 2] (43)
  • [2008-12-28 22:11]

Hello Peter, wonderful shot of a beautifully coloured bird with excellent details and sharpnes, lovely pose too.

  • Great 
  • Rosa Gold Star Critiquer [C: 56 W: 0 N: 0] (0)
  • [2008-12-29 0:38]

Good morning Peter,
what a pose. Great capture.
Stunning colours and sharpness.
Thank you
Enjoy the day

  • Great 
  • siggi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3097 W: 109 N: 12399] (52850)
  • [2008-12-29 4:09]

Hello Peter,
Great capture! I really like the colours and sharp details on this shot. Nicely composed.
Best regards Siggi

hello Peter
Interesting capture have you here. I love the colors of this blackbird and you have taken with sharp focusing , details on his feathers and pose of the bird are splendid
very well done

Merhaba Peter,başına bere geçirmiş gibi görünüyor.Koyu fon olmasına rağmen çok güzel,ellerine sağlık:)

hi Peter

The pose is well done to show the yellow ring around the neck and head to contrast with its black body. The flash provides a good BG black to emphasize the outline of the bird much better here.

Your photo info shows 11.38am whereas the photo looks like taken at night. The effect of flash is most useful for dim light condition.

tfs, bill

Hi my dear friend Peter, excellentcapture of this beautiful blackbird having very nice and wonderful colourswith a fine composition, wonderful details and sharpness.
TFS and cheers,

  • Great 
  • eng55 Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1256 W: 42 N: 1976] (5892)
  • [2008-12-29 11:06]

Hi Peter,
Very nice capture of this bird.Details on black plumage,colors,contrast and exposure are perfect.
Thanks for posting.

  • Great 
  • efsus Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 415 W: 11 N: 843] (3947)
  • [2008-12-29 13:29]

Merhaba Peter,
Bu siyah, kuşun siyah bir artalan önünde harika bir karesi bu. Boyun bölgesindeki sarı rengin siyahla muhteşem kontrastını kusursuz sergilemişsin. Kuşun artistik bir pozuyla seyri çok keyifli bir kare olmuş. Emeğine sağlık.
Best regards.


Excelente trabajo Peter. No es facil contrastar el negro con el negro, pero ese amarillo fue muy oportuno en ello. Buen control de la luz y los reflejos y buena realizacilón técnica en su conjunto.
Saludos: Josep Ignasi.

hello Peter

excellent shot of the Yellow-hooded Blackbird
with fine POV, excellent sharpness and details of the plumage,
you managed superbly your camera to get details
on the black plumage, beautiful eye-contact of the bird with you, TFS


  • Great 
  • Juyona Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor [C: 2232 W: 10 N: 2971] (16891)
  • [2008-12-30 0:35]

Hola Peter,
preciosa captura y fino pov,
excelentes colores y buen encuadre,
saludos amigo,
feliz 2009

  • Great 
  • joey Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1739 W: 224 N: 6872] (24909)
  • [2008-12-30 14:18]

Hi Peter,
a superb shot of this Yellow-hooded Blackbird!
Superb light.
Sharp and crisp.
Excellent composition.

Very well done,

  • Great 
  • izler Gold Star Critiquer [C: 1387 W: 3 N: 9] (44)
  • [2009-01-02 8:32]

merhaba peter
wonderful capture of this cute bird with nice eye contact
i like composition, pose, POV, BG and sharpness

  • Great 
  • red45 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2636 W: 74 N: 9091] (31094)
  • [2009-01-04 8:10]

Hello Peter!

Very interesting and beautifull bird. It looks slightly surprised by your camera, so it took good pose. Excellent exposure with well visible details on black/yellow body. Good capture.

Hi Peter,
Excellent use of flash with sharp details seen in the birds black plumage.
You've picked up the subtle metallic sheen well also.
Very good color, pose, POV, and framing..
That Yellow head looks fantastic :)
Best wishes for a Happy New Year,

  • Great 
  • EOSF1 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1393 W: 119 N: 5267] (23955)
  • [2009-01-07 12:45]

What a fabulous bird and what a great shot Peter! Well composed, perfect exposure and a great result! Well done!


Calibration Check