5 Day Black and White Photo Challenge #5 – Happy Bird

Inca Tern at Lowry Park Zoo by Lee

Inca Tern at Lowry Park Zoo by Lee

 Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding. (Proverbs 3:13 KJV)

There are only two rules for this challenge:

1. On 5 consecutive days, create a post using either a past or recent photo in B&W.
2. Each day invite another blog friend to join in the fun.

My fifth nomination is Talainsphotographybecause he has a variety of photos, most of them from nature. He “likes birds, bees, trees and flowers with sunsets, rainbows, and with rocky towers thrown in. But don’t be surprised if I throw in something else that is not nature oriented occasionally. If it catches my eye, I’ll put it in and try to give you some background on the photo’s subject matter!”

Again, I was nominated by Our Rumbling Ocean, and I nominated AussieBirderSukanya RamanujanThrough Open Lens, B is for Blessed and now Talainsphotography. Please check out all of these fine sites.

This is the fifth and final one in the 5-day challenge. I trust you have enjoyed them and checking out the sites of the ones nominated. There are many more of you that I could have nominated, but I could only choose five. Maybe another challenge will come along that interests me and I will pick you.

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My photos so far for this challenge:

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Good News

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5 Day Black and White Photo Challenge #4 – Shore Friends

Tern with Skimmer Friends at MacDill AFB Shore 2015 by Lee

And great multitudes were gathered together unto him, so that he went into a ship, and sat; and the whole multitude stood on the shore. (Matthew 13:2 KJV)

But when the morning was now come, Jesus stood on the shore: but the disciples knew not that it was Jesus. (John 21:4 KJV)

There are only two rules for this challenge:

1. On 5 consecutive days, create a post using either a past or recent photo in B&W.
2. Each day invite another blog friend to join in the fun.

My fourth nomination is B is for Blessed, “Receive God’s Grace Every Day,” because Lilkah is a Christian who likes to encourage others with her photos, verses and enjoyable stories.

Again, I was nominated by Our Rumbling Ocean, and I nominated AussieBirder and Sukanya RamanujanThrough Open Lens and now B is for Blessed. Please check out all of these fine sites.

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My photos so far for this challenge:

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Good News

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Ian’s Bird of the Week – Pied Butcherbird

Pied Butcherbird (Cracticus nigrogularis) by Ian
Ian’s Bird of the Week – Pied Butcherbird ~ by Ian Montgomery

Newsletter ~ 2/22/14

Birds of the week are usually chosen on the basis of appearance, photo quality or species interest, but here for a change is one whose real claim to fame is auditory. Not that Pied Butcherbirds don’t look quite dapper, even if the hooked bill suggests a predatory existence and the black hood has the connotation of the executioner, at least for the Spanish : Verdugo Gorjinegro, where verdugo means executioner or hangman, and gorjinegro you can guess. However, their real claim to fame is their beautiful singing which has a clarity and sense of purpose that I think is unequalled. When I first heard a Pied Butcherbird singing in Australia in western New South Wales in 1971, I was fascinated. To me it seemed like it was practising the theme from an oboe concerto, as it would keep carefully repeating the phrases, each time slightly differently.

The first edition of Graham Pizzey’s Field Guide to the Birds of Australia (1980-2000) has wonderful descriptions – I bought it after reading his description of Musk Duck, which starts “A decidedly strange duck.” – so I’ll quote him on the Pied Butcherbird: “Superb: slow flute-like piping, of clear high-pitched and low mellow notes, throughout day and moonlit nights, best in early morning; often given by two or more birds alternatively, higher-pitched notes of one contrasting with more mellow notes of others. … Also accomplished mimicry, as part of quieter sub-song.”

I can’t just leave you hanging after a description like that. Here is a YouTube link to a lovely video of a duet

and here is another to a Pied Butcherbird mimicking a variety of species

Listen to these and I’m sure you’ll agree that this is one of the most beautiful song birds in the world.

Pied Butcherbird (Cracticus nigrogularis) by Ian

On the subject of mimicry, I had an email from Rose Bay in Sydney recounting a conversation that took place between a Grey Butcherbird and the correspondent, thank you Jeremy, who whistled in response, over several months. The bird remained hidden and unidentified in foliage until a couple of weeks ago when, during such a talk, he spotted the bird and the mystery was solved. I’ve accompanied a Pied Butcherbird here in Bluewater on the treble recorder. I checked their vocal range using a pitch analyser on sound recordings and found that the mellow notes were close to middle C (C4), while the top notes were around D6, two octaves above middle C; an impressive range.

Pied Butcherbird (Cracticus nigrogularis) by Ian

And, yes, they do prey on small birds, mammals, reptiles and invertebrates and will even hunt in unison with Australian Hobbies. They get their name from their habit of wedging larger prey items in a fork in a tree (or clothes line) so that they can dismember it. If you think that sounds macabre, go and listen to Berlioz’s Symphonie Fantastique again, imagining the idée fixé played by a Pied Butcherbird, particular the rendering of it in the third movement on the oboe and by the clarinet in the fourth Marche au supplice. The latter appears briefly before the fall of the guillotine. I tried playing the first of the YouTube videos simulaneously with the third movement a short while ago and the result is, well, fantastic.

Pied Butcherbird (Cracticus nigrogularis) by Ian

Anyway, back to family matters. Pied Butcherbirds have group territories similar to those of their cousins the Australian Magpies with usually one breeding pair. The female does all the hard work of building the nest and incubating the eggs while, the male, presumably, sings. The other members of the group, usually offspring from earlier broods, do help to feed the young.

I should, I suppose, mention the photos. The first three are of adult birds, the last two of brownish immature birds. At 32-36cm/12.5-14in in length the Pied Butcherbird is intermediate between the smaller Grey and Black-backed Butcherbirds and the larger Black Butcherbird. The Pied Butcherbird occurs through most of mainland Australia, but is absent from very arid regions, most of South Australia and Victoria, and southeastern New South Wales. Here in the northeast Queensland, they show a preference for watercourses.

PAS-Arta Pied Butcherbird (Cracticus nigrogularis) by Ian 5

The bird of the week has been going out regularly, if not weekly, since late 2002. I have copies of almost all of them and I’ve decided to publish them as an electronic book under the umbrella “A Bird Photographer’s Diary”. At the moment, I’m progressing steadily through the second quarter of 2006, and I’m having great fun reliving all the experiences and places involved. The intention is to add photos of the various locations and habitats. I’ll keep you posted.

Greetings and sweet sounds,
Ian

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Ian Montgomery, Birdway Pty Ltd,
454 Forestry Road, Bluewater, Qld 4818
Tel 0411 602 737 ian@birdway.com.au
Bird Photos http://www.birdway.com.au/
Where to Find Birds in Northern Queensland: iTunesGoogle Play Kobo Books
Recorder Society http://www.nqrs.org.au


Lee’s Addition:

The flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing [of birds] has come, and the voice of the turtledove is heard in our land. (Song of Solomon 2:12 AMP)

Wow! What an amazing article about these birds and the videos only enhance it more. I especially like the them singing duet. Ian finds us the most interesting birds to see and hear. Thanks, Ian.

Check out Ian’s Butcherbirds in his Artamidae Family

Ian’s Bird of the Week

Artamidae – Woodswallows, butcherbirds and allies Family

Wordless Birds

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5 Day Black and White Photo Challenge #3 – Galah

Galah (Eolophus roseicapilla) and Dan at Brevard Zoo BW

Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal among you, which comes upon you for your testing, as though some strange thing were happening to you; (1 Peter 4:12 NASB)

There are only two rules for this challenge:

1. On 5 consecutive days, create a post using either a past or recent photo in B&W.
2. Each day invite another blog friend to join in the fun.

My third nomination is Through Open Lensbecause he is a great photographer and has some stunning photos. The articles are short, but informative. An all around variety of nature.

Again, I was nominated by Our Rumbling Ocean, and I nominated AussieBirder, Sukanya Ramanujan and now Through Open Lens. Please check out all of these fine sites.

(Couldn’t resist turning my favorite photo of Dan into Black and White)

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My photos so far for this challenge:

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Good News

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Sunday Inspiration – Flycatchers

White-headed Marsh Tyrant (Arundinicola leucocephala) Male ©©Dario Sanches

White-headed Marsh Tyrant (Arundinicola leucocephala) Male ©©Dario Sanches

Where the birds build their nests, And the stork, whose home is the fir trees. (Psalms 104:17 NASB)

Last week we saw some of the Tyrant Flycatcher family. This time, with over 400 species, just this family of birds will be featured.

The tyrant flycatchers are birds which occur throughout North and South America. They are considered the largest family of birds, with more than 400 species. They are the most diverse avian family in every country in the Americas, except for the United States and Canada. As could be expected from a family this large, the members vary greatly in shape, patterns, size and colors. Most, but not all, species are rather plain, with various hues of brown, gray and white commonplace. Obvious exceptions include the bright red vermilion flycatcher, blue, black, white and yellow many-colored rush-tyrant and some species of tody-flycatchers or tyrants, which are often yellow, black, white and/or rufous.

Vermilion Flycatcher (Pyrocephalus rubinus) by Dario Sanches

Vermilion Flycatcher (Pyrocephalus rubinus) by Dario Sanches

The smallest family members are the closely related short-tailed pygmy tyrant and black-capped pygmy tyrant. These species reach a total length of 6.5–7 cm (2.5–2.8 in) and a weight of 4–5 grams. By length, they are the smallest passerines on earth, although some species of Old World warblers apparently rival them in their minuscule mean body masses if not in total length. The minuscule size and very short tail of the Myiornis pygmy tyrants often lend them a resemblance to a tiny ball or insect. The largest tyrant flycatcher is the great shrike-tyrant at 29 cm (11.5 in) and 99.2 grams (3.5 oz).

Please enjoy watching a slideshow of some more of the Lord’s neatly created birds as you listen our orchestra and then the choir sing.

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Click to listen:

“Amazing Grace” – Orchestra and “I Love You, Written in Red” – Choir (Faith Baptist Church)

(Because there are so many birds there are two inspirations. More of this bird family were shown in Sunday Inspiration – Everlasting God)

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Sunday Inspirations
Tyrannidae – Tyrant Flycatchers Family
Good News

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5 Day Black and White Photo Challenge #2 – Woody

Wood Duck Brevard Zoo 120913 by Lee BW

Wood Duck Brevard Zoo 120913 by Lee BW

Neither shalt thou swear by thy head, because thou canst not make one hair white or black. (Matthew 5:36 KJV)

There are only two rules for this challenge:

1. On 5 consecutive days, create a post using either a past or recent photo in B&W.
2. Each day invite another blog friend to join in the fun.

My second nomination is Sukanya Ramanujanbecause she accepted the challenge and she has great photos. She is from Chennai, India (Same town a j mithra was from) She is a “multi-lingual professional with varied interests such as reading, travelling, music and photography.” Also check out her photos.

Again, I was nominated by Our Rumbling Ocean, and I nominated AussieBirder and now Sukanya Rananujan. Please check out both of these fine sites.

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My photos so far for this challenge:

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Good News

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5 Day Black and White Photo Challenge #1 – Drying Out

Anhinga (Anhinga anhinga) Female at Vierra Wetlands By Dan'sPix B-W

Anhinga (Anhinga anhinga) Female at Vierra Wetlands By Dan’sPix B-W

There are only two rules for this challenge:

1. On 5 consecutive days, create a post using either a past or recent photo in B&W.
2. Each day invite another blog friend to join in the fun.

My first nomination is AussieBirderbecause their purpose is for “the appreciation of Australian birds and the love of birdwatching, sharing bird sightings, photographs, personal experiences and helpful information.” That pretty well sums up their purpose and feel they are up to the challenge.

I am thankful to Our Rumbling Ocean for nominating me. They live on the East Coast of South Africa and have lots of nature photos, plus an adorable son, Boeta. I enjoy following their adventures.

Like the heat of summer in a dry land, the angry shouts of those foreigners brought us to our knees. But like a thick cloud that blocks the summer heat, you answered their challenge. (Isaiah 25:5 ERV)

(I converted one of Dan’s great Anhinga photos)

AussieBirder

Our Rumbling Ocean

Dan’s Pix

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Good News

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Winter Willow Ptarmigan

Willow Ptarmigan (Lagopus lagopus) ©USFWS

Willow Ptarmigan (Lagopus lagopus) ©USFWS

He gives snow like wool; He scatters the frost like ashes; (Psalms 147:16 NKJV)

Let them praise the name of the LORD, For He commanded and they were created. He also established them forever and ever; He made a decree which shall not pass away. Praise the LORD from the earth, You great sea creatures and all the depths; Fire and hail, snow and clouds; Stormy wind, fulfilling His word; (Psalms 148:5-8 NKJV)

Since so much of North America is having such a cold and snowy winter, thought that you might like watching a Willow Ptarmigan in its winter outfit.

Lesley the Bird Nerd produced this YouTube and thought you might enjoy watching how the Lord has prepared this bird to survive in winter.

We are going to drop down to freezing the for a few nights here in Central Florida, but nothing like what many of you are experiencing. Stay warm and enjoy the Lord’s Creations.

God thunders marvelously with His voice; He does great things which we cannot comprehend. For He says to the snow, ‘Fall on the earth'; Likewise to the gentle rain and the heavy rain of His strength. He seals the hand of every man, That all men may know His work. (Job 37:5-7 NKJV)

The willow ptarmigan (Lagopus lagopus) is a bird in the grouse subfamily Tetraoninae of the pheasant family Phasianidae. It is also known as the willow grouse and in the British Isles, where it was previously believed to be a separate species, as the red grouse. It is a sedentary species, breeding in birch and other forests and moorlands in northern Europe, the tundra of Scandinavia, Siberia, Alaska and northern Canada, in particular in the provinces of Newfoundland and Labrador. It is the state bird of Alaska. In the summer the birds are largely brown, with dappled plumage, but in the winter they are white with some black feathers in their tails (British populations do not adopt a winter plumage). Nesting takes place in the spring when clutches of four to ten eggs are laid in a scrape on the ground. The chicks are precocial and soon leave the nest and while they are young, both parents play a part in caring for them. The chicks eat insects and young plant growth while the adults are completely herbivorous, eating leaves, flowers, buds, seeds and berries during the summer and largely subsisting on the buds and twigs of willow and other dwarf shrubs and trees during the winter. (Wikipedia)

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Willow Ptarmigan (Lagopus lagopus)  Winter ©WikiC

Willow Ptarmigan (Lagopus lagopus) Winter ©WikiC

Willow Ptarmigan – State of Alaska with videos

Willow Ptarmigan – All About Birds

Willow Ptarmigan – Wikipedia

Willow Ptarmigan – Kidzone

Phasianidae – Pheasants, Fowl & Allies Family

Wordless Birds

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Tickle Me Tuesday – Top Funny Bird Video

Mom and Baby at Lake Hollingsworth

Mom and Baby at Lake Hollingsworth

He will yet fill your mouth with laughing, And your lips with rejoicing. (Job 8:21 NKJV)

This is a video of funny bird antics that was made in 2012. This should Tickle you. It tickled me. I especially couldn’t believe that Gull eating what he does. It is amazing what the Lord’s created birds can do.

A time to weep, And a time to laugh; … (Ecclesiastes 3:4a NKJV)

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Tickle Me Tuesday – Bird of Paradise

Tickle Me Tuesday,” Challenge by Sandra Connor

Wordless Birds

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Color That Man Did Not (Could Not) Create

Wood Duck and Mandarin Duck

COLOR THAT MAN DID NOT (COULD NOT) CREATE… ONLY THE MASTER CREATOR COULD

Received this in an email and thought I would share it. Not sure of the source of the photos, but absolutely know who the Master Creator was.

So God created great sea creatures and every living thing that moves, with which the waters abounded, according to their kind, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. And God blessed them, saying, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth.” So the evening and the morning were the fifth day. (Genesis 1:21-23 NKJV)

Click any photo to start the Gallery

Who Paints The Leaves?

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Sunday Inspiration – Everlasting God

Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever thou hadst formed the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting, thou art God. (Psalms 90:2 KJV)

Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the LORD, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? there is no searching of his understanding. (Isaiah 40:28 KJV)

Since I have been going down the list of Passerines, might as well keep going. Today’s birds are from Gnateaters (Conopophagidae), Tapaculos (Rhinocryptidae),  Crescentchests (Melanopareiidae) and part of the Tyrant Flycatchers (Tyrannidae). There are over 400 members in the last family, so will add more later.

As you can see, most of these are fairly small birds and rather non-descript. Their Creator has given them a nice look, but has them protected by letting them blend in with their surroundings. Another show of love for His creation.

Rufous Gnateater (Conopophaga lineata) ©WikiC

Rufous Gnateater (Conopophaga lineata) ©WikiC

The gnateaters are a bird family, consisting of ten small passerine species in two genera, which occur in South and Central America. The members of this family are very closely related to the antbirds and less closely to the antpittas and tapaculos. Due to their remote and dim habitat, gnateaters are a little-studied and poorly known family of birds. They are round, short-tailed, and long-legged birds, about 12–19 cm (5–7½ inches) in length. They are quite upright when standing. Most Conopophaga species have a white tuft behind the eye.

Ocellated Tapaculo (Acropternis orthonyx) ©WikiC

Ocellated Tapaculo (Acropternis orthonyx) ©WikiC

The tapaculos (pronounced ta-pa-COO-lo) are found mainly in South America and with the highest diversity in the Andean regions. Three species (Chocó, Tacarcuna, and the silvery-fronted) are found in southern Central America. Tapaculos are small to medium-sized birds, with a total length ranging from 10–24 cm (4–9½ in). These are terrestrial species that fly only poorly on their short wings. They have strong legs, well-suited to their habitat of grassland or forest undergrowth. The tail is cocked and pointed towards the head, and the name tapaculo possibly derives from Spanish for “cover your behind”.

Collared Crescentchest (Melanopareia torquata) ©Arthur Grosset

Collared Crescentchest (Melanopareia torquata) ©Arthur Grosset

The crescentchests are birds from South America. The crescentchests range in length from 14 to 16 cm (5.5–6.3 in), in weight from 16 to 23 g (0.56–0.81 oz) and have relatively long tails compared to the tapaculos. The plumage is striking with a distinctive band across the chest that gives the group their name.

Scale-crested Pygmy Tyrant (Lophotriccus pileatus) by Michael Woodruff

Scale-crested Pygmy Tyrant (Lophotriccus pileatus) by Michael Woodruff

The tyrant flycatchers are birds which occur throughout North and South America. They are considered the largest family of birds, with more than 400 species. They are the most diverse avian family in every country in the Americas, except for the United States and Canada. As could be expected from a family this large, the members vary greatly in shape, patterns, size and colors. Most, but not all, species are rather plain, with various hues of brown, gray and white commonplace. Obvious exceptions include the bright red vermilion flycatcher, blue, black, white and yellow many-colored rush-tyrant and some species of tody-flycatchers or tyrants, which are often yellow, black, white and/or rufous.

The smallest family members are the closely related short-tailed pygmy tyrant and black-capped pygmy tyrant. These species reach a total length of 6.5–7 cm (2.5–2.8 in) and a weight of 4–5 grams. By length, they are the smallest passerines on earth, although some species of Old World warblers apparently rival them in their minuscule mean body masses if not in total length. The minuscule size and very short tail of the Myiornis pygmy tyrants often lend them a resemblance to a tiny ball or insect. The largest tyrant flycatcher is the great shrike-tyrant at 29 cm (11.5 in) and 99.2 grams (3.5 oz).

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Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began, But now is made manifest, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith: To God only wise, be glory through Jesus Christ for ever. Amen. Written to the Romans from Corinthus, and sent by Phebe servant of the church at Cenchrea. (Romans 16:25-27 KJV)

Click to listen:

“Everlasting God” – Pastor Jerry, Reagan Osborne, Caleb & Jessie Padgett

This was another song presented the day Pastor Jerry Smith retired from our Music Ministry at Faith Baptist Church.

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Gnateaters (Conopophagidae)

Tapaculos (Rhinocryptidae)

Crescentchests (Melanopareiidae)

Tyrant Flycatchers (Tyrannidae)

Sharing the Gospel

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