Western Kingbird – A Consolation Prize

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There are times when I go out to photograph a specific species but come home with images of birds I didn’t expect to see.

Western KingbirdWestern Kingbird – Nikon D200, f6.3, 1/3000, ISO 500, Nikkor 200-400mm VR with 1.4x TC at 400mm, natural light

Yesterday Burrowing Owls with chicks were my target species but I wasn’t able to get as close as I would have liked though I did get images of this lovely Western Kingbird that was next to the dirt road I was on. A little bit of Serendipity!

I’ll try for the owls again later but I am quite happy with this Western Kingbird “consolation prize”.



  1. Linda Rockwell May 30, 2012 at 2:14 pm

    Exquisite photo Mia! I love these birds. I’m happy to see that my neighborhood Western Kingbirds have returned for the summer. 🙂

    • Mia McPherson June 1, 2012 at 5:27 pm

      Thanks Linda, Western Kingbirds are such chatterers, I love to hear them. Glad your are back to delight you too.

  2. Mathew May 30, 2012 at 9:52 am

    It appears that the outer tail feathers are white, which makes it a Western. There is also the Cassin’s, which looks very similar. Not only have my birdwatching skills improved to the point where I could identify the Cassin’s (overall darker gray above, with the tail having a pale terminal edging), I have had an opportunity to see both W/C side by side on a fence. The differences between the two are much more marked and it is actually easier to distinguish them.

    • Mia McPherson June 1, 2012 at 5:15 pm

      Mathew, we also have the Cassin’s here in Utah but they are primarily in the south to south-eastern part of the state. I have yet to photograph a Cassin’s though I would love the opportunity. It must have been amazing to see the W/C side by side. Thank you for the comment.

  3. Julie Brown May 30, 2012 at 4:25 am

    Gorgeous detail and color. I love Kingbirds.

    • Mia McPherson May 30, 2012 at 5:31 am

      Julie, I love Kingbirds too, I saw an Eastern Kingbird a few weeks ago but wasn’t able to get a shot off before it flew away, maybe I will get another chance this week. Thanks!

  4. Bob Zeller May 29, 2012 at 8:06 pm

    Gorgeous photo. Beautiful bokeh, Mia

  5. Susan May 29, 2012 at 6:42 pm

    Wow, fantastic photo!

  6. Julie G. May 29, 2012 at 9:43 am

    Wow! Stunning portrait of a most handsome bird!

    • Mia McPherson May 30, 2012 at 5:29 am

      Thank you Julie, Kingbirds are handsome.

  7. Dawn Fine May 29, 2012 at 9:22 am

    Super shot..good luck with your next attempt on the owls.

    • Mia McPherson May 30, 2012 at 5:28 am

      Dawn, next time I have a plan with the owls, but for now I’m heading north…

  8. Laurence Butler May 29, 2012 at 7:21 am

    Consolation indeed! Beautimus.

  9. Carol Mattingly May 29, 2012 at 6:27 am

    Beautiful yellows. Carol

  10. Elijah Goodwin May 29, 2012 at 5:15 am

    Nice image Mia! Beautiful birds.

    • Mia McPherson May 30, 2012 at 5:27 am

      Thank you Elijah, they are beautiful.

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