Say’s Phoebe On A Blustery Winter Afternoon

You may enlarge any image in this blog by clicking on it. Click again for a detailed view.

This is the time of year in southern Arizona when the weather seems to change by the minute.  It can be cold and blustery and warm and sunny just a few hours later.

A few afternoons ago I was out cruising, looking for wildlife to photograph.  It had rained fairly heavily the previous day.  Now, the weather had turned brilliantly sunny but it was chilly outdoors with a stiff northwesterly breeze.

I happened on a Say’s Phoebe sitting on a wire fence.  The bird was unusually laid back about my taking its picture.  Normally, these little flycatchers are quite skittish and fly at the drop of a hat. This bird, however, clung to its perch, apparently not wanting to get tossed around by the gusty wind.  The sun was coming from behind the bird and it kept its back in sunlight, evidently seeking the sun’s warmth to counteract the chill and wind.  I had a tough time photographing the phoebe because it would not show me its head.  So, I had a bird that was reluctant to fly but even more reluctant to give me a look that was worth photographing.

I decided to be patient and wait.  It took several minutes but, finally, the bird turned just enough so that its full head was exposed.  I made this image.

I’m very pleased with this image because I’ve never previously been able to capture so much detail when I photograph Say’s Phoebes.  These birds never allow me to approach very closely.  But, this bird sat only about five feet from me.  I have the cold and wind to thank for that.  And, my patience.  I’m not a particularly patient person, so I’ll give myself a pat on the back for waiting for this bird to give me a good look.

Image made with a Canon 5Div, 400mm f4 DO II lens+1.4x telextender, M setting (auto ISO), ISO 500, f7.1 @ 1/2500.

One Reply to “Say’s Phoebe On A Blustery Winter Afternoon”

  1. Nice Steven! Enjoyed seeing the Say’s Phoebe!

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