Crested up close

close-up of the crested tit
First close-up of the crested tit

I had a great day at the feeder today. I’ve finally figured out which angles to use when it’s a sunny weather so I can avoid the the shadow/highlight nightmare that has previously bogged down my sunny day bird shoots; the trick is to shoot up so the background is made up of tree crowns which are more evenly lit than the tree trunks. And I’ve also figured out how to get pictures of those more jittery customers like the crested tit. There’s no point in trying to chase them because by the time you’ve spotted the bird and moved the camera in that direction, the bird will be gone. After a while of doing this, I finally noticed that the crested tit stopped at a specific spot on the perch a couple of times. So I thought, if  it’s done it twice, then maybe it will do it for a third time. I pointed my camera at that spot, kept looking through the viewfinder and ignored everything else… until the crested tit settled on that same spot again! I was sure that this was the last time I was going to see it perched, so I started looking around again and catch some other birds.

crested tit
The pattern, the crest, and the red eye!

So I got the greenfinch, blue tit, great tit, coal tit, willow tit… basically, every bird I get at the feeder except the nuthatch (blurry pictures don’t count). And the squirrel. There’s no doubt about it, the camouflage works because suddenly I noticed that the squirrel was eating on the ground just a couple of metres in front of me. I was even able to change position (slowly shuffle sideways for a better angle) and it didn’t scatter. So maybe I should start thinking about a set-up for the squirrel as well; the perch I’ve been using for the past few years is getting old.

And then the crested tit came back and settled on another perch. Happy!

Bad hair day?
Bad hair day?

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