Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Bird Photography Weekly - Song Sparrow

This song sparrow took up residence last summer near the end of the drive at our place "up north". I was playing with my new I-Flyer when I spotted him flitting about in the trees. He became quite defensive when hearing the call of another song sparrow coming from the I-Flyer. I assumed he was defending his nesting territory. He got pretty close which allowed for a couple of good photos but not wanting to upset him too much I stopped calling. Birding ethics has been a very hot topic this winter in Wisconsin, especially in regard to photography of the numerous Snowy Owls in the state. Photographers were seen approaching the birds too closely, releasing pet store white mice into the fields where they were hunting, trespassing on private property to get a better photo op and the like. This all seems very contrary to how "real" birders behave when in the field. What are your thoughts on birding ethics? Stop by Bird Photography Weekly at www.birdfreak.com for more links to some great bird photography!


  1. I have heard of some unscrupulous antics by a few bird photographers and it just irritates me. No photograph is more important than the safety of an animal and/or the respect of other people's properties.

    Your sparrow shots are great, by the way.

  2. Excellent shots.Well taken.

  3. Gorgeous captures of the Song Sparrow Tammy! As far as "birding ethics" go, I think it gets down to common sense.

    Birders created "Pishing" to call birds up out of the brush so we could see them. Now we have electronic devices we can use to call birds so we may be able to see them (even though we don't know what we are saying to them ;-)

    I see know problem with using these tactics as long as we cause no harm to the birds we love so much. Obviously, if we are trampling on someone's private property or doing something that may be detrimental to the birds themselves it is wrong. I think we must be careful during mating season not to disturb the breeding behaviors of birds but for the most part, any disturbance birders make is probably short lived and harmless.

    Owlman had a discussion on his website regarding "baiting" which I believe is totally unnecessary and detrimental to the owls, if you care to check it out.

  4. Wow, the photography is so beautiful and sharp on those shots. It's like the bird is just a foot away from me...remarkable.

    As for the "baiting" by photographers...well, I guess I can't throw stones as I put out feed in feeders totally for selfish reasons...to attract them to my yard so I can see and admire them.

  5. I heard my first Song Sparrow for 2009 singing this morning when I was out scouting for wild turkeys. It's nice to know the birds think spring is on the way (I heard Eastern Bluebirds too!)