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Australian Reed-Warbler

Australian Reed-Warbler (Image ID 41990)
Photographed byJim Schultz on Sun 31st Aug, 2008 and uploaded on Thu 20th Aug, 2020 .
Resolution1800x1400
Viewed65
ID41990
CommentThis is a capture of the Western Australian subspecies Acrocephalus australis gouldi.

Walking the boardwalk into reed beds at Herdsman Lake near the Wildlife Centre, I overheard several male Australian Reed Warblers having singing competitions, though mostly I just caught glimpses of them. On a first visit, however, I noticed that two dominant males would come to meet and have a face-off, obviously at the edges of their territories. I came back 2 or 3 days in order to capture this moment, but was unsuccessful in getting just a decent capture. I then brought a flash with me and set up, where I expected the two males to meet, and pre-set my focus to the side of the view-finder in order not to focus straight in between the birds and beyond, as had previously happened. Over a time span of a couple of hours, my two males came to meet right in front of me several times, both high on testosterone and ignoring me totally. The stare of the two birds is potent but hilarious, like two young men having words in an ice-hockey match.
EquipmentNikon D3 camera body, Nikkor AF-S ED 500mm f4 D IF lens,
Camera rig Support: Manfrotto Article 055B tripod, Manfrotto Video Pro Article 136 (modified) tripod head; Nikon Speedlight flash-gun SB-800 set to ‘Rear Curtain Sync’ TTL & -1.3 EV.
Shutter Priority 1/200 sec at f5.6. ISO-200. Metering Mode: Center-Weighted, Focus Mode: AF-C; AF Area Mode: DYNAMIC (9 points)
Nikon ViewNX-i for viewing and selecting files; Adobe Photoshop Camera Raw/CC 2020 for 130% crop, selective sharpening, ‘taming of background’ and general post-processing; Topaz Pro plug-ins DeNoise AI & Studio 2 for blanket sharpening and noise control. ‘Australian Bird Guide 2019’ for supplementary data and image colour comparison
LocationHerdsman Lake, Western Australia
Keywordsmale, adult, behaviour/display
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