Sunny White-crowned Sparrow portrait – Nikon D500, f7.1, 1/400, ISO 640, Nikkor 500mm VR with 1.4x TC, natural light
Yesterday morning while looking for birds to photograph on Antelope Island State Park I had two White-crowned Sparrows fly into a rabbitbrush that was so close to me that all I could do was take portraits of them. That doesn’t happen often for me with this species so I quickly turned my lens towards the birds, focused and started taking close up photos of the two sparrows. One of the White-crowned Sparrows was an adult and the other was a juvenile and both birds were foraging for food.
Most of the rabbitbrush was in the shade but when the birds reached the top and lifted their heads up they were lit up by the warm, morning light. In this photo of the adult White-crowned its head was lit up while most of its body was in the shade.
Portrait of an adult White-crowned Sparrow – Nikon D500, f7.1, 1/1600, ISO 640, Nikkor 500mm VR with 1.4x TC, natural light
When the adult moved down the rabbitbrush into the shaded part of the shrub I kept taking photos of it and although this photo lacks the warm light of the image above I still find it appealing and somewhat intimate because the bird looked right at me and it was so close that I could see the fine details of its feathers with my naked eye. When the adult moved deeper into the rabbitbrush I knew the juvenile was still there so I looked for it to pop up on top of the rabbitbrush too.
Sunny juvenile White-crowned Sparrow portrait – Nikon D500, f7.1, 1/1250, ISO 640, Nikkor 500mm VR with 1.4x TC, natural light
I didn’t have to wait long to see the juvenile White-crowned Sparrow make its appearance at the top of the rabbitbrush. In this photo the birds head was in the sunlight and the lower part of its body was in the shade, I liked the alert posture of the sparrow, how it raised the feathers on its head, the light in its eye and the bit of rabbitbrush fluff stuck to its face below and to the right of its bill.
Juvenile White-crowned Sparrow portrait – Nikon D500, f7.1, 1/1600, ISO 640, Nikkor 500mm VR with 1.4x TC, natural light
Then the young sparrow moved a little bit towards me and out into the sunlight, see how its chest went from looking grayish in the shade to looking more buffy colored in the light? That bit of rabbitbrush fluff is still there too.
Having these two White-crowned Sparrows fly in so close that I could take portraits of them was a real treat for me.
Life is good.