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Bird Photography
Home  /  Bird Photography

Birds. Yes, birds. Some people couldn't give two hoots. I can give at least one :)

All* birds here are wild & free!

*Apart from the Brown Falcon at the bottom of the page, and the peacock. Are peacock's ever really that wild? Kooky? Definitely. Wild? Dunno.

 

Green-and-white Hummingbird at Machu Picchu

Hummingbirds. They're one of the things I've always wanted to photograph in the wild. To do so while overlooking Machu Picchu is even more special.

You can't get enough of these guys whirling past. They're so small, cute and fast. No trip to anywhere that has hummingbirds is complete without seeing them. It's fantastic to watch them interact with their natural environment. The Green-and-white Hummingbird is endemic to this area of Peru. I photographed this one in a fleeting moment between flowers right at the Sun Gate (Inti Punku) not long after sunrise. A very sweet breakfast for sure. Dec 2019.

Inti Punku, Machu Picchu, Peru

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Black Falcon!

What a privilege to be present to watch this Black Falcon hunt. To not only feel the rush of the wind as it flew past, but to actually hear the "Whoosh!" - that was incredible! So fast, so close, so furious, what an incredible hunting machine. That being said, it's strike rate wasn't great, but it was good enough for a feed - if only it could get away from the other hungry birds chasing it.

Oxley Creek Common has resident dark Brown Falcons (Brown Falcons come in a few different shades), so it was a real treat to see this much rarer predator in action. They are cosmetically similar but they are very different beasts.

Oxley Creek Common, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

White-eared Monarch

I can't really say I know much about the White-eared Monarch. Needless to say it's got a white ear. Maybe even two. Enough said.

Kholo, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

White-bellied Sea-Eagle

Birds don't get much more majestic than this monster female White-bellied Sea-Eagle. Wow!

Kholo, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Scaly-breasted Lorikeet

Scaly-breasted Lorikeets are regular visitors to our gardens here in southeast Queensland. They are fairly shy, cheeky and can be very noisy - a bit like me :) Unfortunately their numbers are decreasing as they have trouble competing with their bigger and more aggressive cousins - Rainbow Lorikeets.

Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Red-tailed Tropicbird

Red-tailed Tropicbirds are majestic. Sitting on a cliff watching them soar over the aqua sea below is one of the photographic highlights of my life. If these birds & quokkas lived on the same island it'd be the most popular island on Earth - or at least should be.

Lord Howe Island, New South Wales, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Red-tailed Tropicbird

"Hi there!" I love it when wildlife is inquisitive, especially when it's something so strikingly elegant as a Red-tailed Tropicbird on the extraordinary destination of Lord Howe Island.

Lord Howe Island, New South Wales, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Eastern Yellow Robin

I took this photo while walking along one of the tracks near O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat in Lamington National Park. Like most small birds they don't sit still for long. It was there then gone. So was I, and sadly without a lamington in sight.

Lamington National Park, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Eastern Osprey

This Eastern Osprey is heading back from the shops with food for the kids. Nice.

Sandy Camp Road Wetlands Reserve, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Satin Bowerbird

A Satin Bowerbird perches in the rain. This is one of those birds where the female (or young male) is prettier than the mature male, kinda. Males don't get their satin finish until they're 6 or 7 years old. The eye is spectacular in both the male and female.

Queen Mary Falls, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Red-browed Finch

Red-browed Finches are definitely a favourite - small, sweet, beautiful. What's there not to like?

Oxley Creek Common, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Tropical Fluff Ball

This cute little Red-Tailed Tropicbird chick is waiting for it's parents to come back to its cliff-top nest with some tasty morsels for breakfast. Just after I took this photo one of them did.

Lord Howe Island, New South Wales, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Musk Lorikeet

Musk Lorikeets are pretty attractive birds. This one paused feeding to check me out. I've always thought 'Mask' Lorikeet was a pretty obvious & better name. Maybe the person who originally named it made a typo.

Adelaide, South Australia, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Crimson Rosella

A Crimson Rosella feeds in the rain. Or it's waving at me. Yeah, I think it's waving. Definitely.

Queen Mary Falls, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Wrecking Bull

When you just want a decent photo of a Brolga and a bull decides to chase them away. No bull!

Somewhere far out west, New South Wales, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Pacifist Fighting For Peace

On the shores of the Pacific Ocean a Pacific Black Duck and 11 ducklings are harassed and stalked by a Pacific Gull with a specific desire for a duckling kind of dinner. When I first saw the ducks I thought "How delightful” but quickly realised they were fleeing from danger. Due to the aggressive defence of the ducklings by the parent they all made it safely off the beach and into the adjoining stream to quack another day. Hooray!

Bruny Island, Tasmania, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Yellow-tailed Black-Cockatoo

"Squaaaaaawwwwk!"

Bruny Island, Tasmania, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Beautiful Firetail

Beautiful by name. Beautiful by nature.

Bruny Island, Tasmania, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Black Kite

I love birds of prey in full flight. So awesome, so majestic. This Black Kite is hunting mice in a freshly mown field.

Oxley Creek Common, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Common Noddy

The Common Noddy fishes by dipping its beak into the ocean like the one here.

Lord Howe Island, New South Wales, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Great Cormorant

This cormorant knows it's great. Fair enough. I'm sure it's pretty terrific.

A Rocky Outcrop Off The Southern Coast Of Tasmania, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Powerful Scowl

I suspect this Powerful Owl wasn't too happy to be intruded on during its morning nap. It's hard to read - perhaps I'm being too harsh in suggesting that it's scowling. I always do my best to keep as silent as possible so as to never rudely intrude, especially here seeing as these things are as big as a koala and we've all heard about Drop Bears. I didn't want to be the first in a vicious series of Drop Owl incidents - I mean look at those talons! Thankfully it was mostly content to sleep and keep a watchful eye or two on me every now and again. Phew!

Slaughter Falls, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Heart

These Black Swans only have eyes for each other.

Black & White version - almost.

Raymond Island (Gippsland Lakes), Victoria, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Australian Pied Oystercatcher

I caught up with this Australian Pied Oystercatcher early one sunny morning on Bruny Island. We were going to do breakfast but then I saw what it was eating. It was then it finally clicked: ‘Oystercatcher’ isn’t just it’s surname:)

Bruny Island, Tasmania, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Fishing Jabiru

"There's a puddling, be in it a fish for me.
There's a puddling, be in it a fish for free.
There's a puddling, be in it a fish for tea.
Oh my dearest Joanna, will you now a-puddling be?
Oh my darling...

...Oh, ha ha. I didn't see you there. You gave me a bit of a fright actually. Almost puddling, you could say. When I'm fishing, I'm singing. When I'm singing, I'm fishing. That's the way of a Black-necked Stork. Now, where was I? Fishing.

There's a puddling, be in it a fish for me…”

Wunjunga, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Ravenous Stare / Art Version

I took the photo that this is based on while at Rottnest Island, not that anyone goes there to see the Australian Ravens! But this one saw me :) And they are always hungry!

Photo & art by me.

Rottnest Island, Western Australia, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

The Captain & The Albatross

Everyone on the boat knew I wanted to take albatross photos. I’d mentioned it to the Captain as I boarded and then to the people I sat near. I’d never seen one until a couple of days beforehand & here I was on an adventure cruise in the rolling seas off the coast of Tasmania in the hope of getting a good photo of one. People would call out when they saw an albatross in the distance & I’d grab a photo or two - it turned into a game of Spot The Albatross.

I’d requested a number of times to the Captain that we venture nearer to where the albatrosses were flying, but to no avail.

We were about to turn for home when I heard a loud cry of "Albatross!" & gasp after gasp. I turned and watched with awe as this one landed right near the boat. Everyone was calling out in astonishment, having trouble believing it was happening. Even the Captain said he’d never seen it happen before, but he’s never been out photographing with me before.

So this Shy Albatross defied its name, flew in to say “Hi” and happily posed for photos.

After a minute or two the grumpy Captain asked me if I’d taken enough photos. I said I’d get a few more. In a huff he just turned the boat around and hurried back to base, getting back early. Weird behaviour by the Captain & from the albatross. I wonder if he’s ever read The Rime of the Ancient Mariner! :)

Somewhere off the southern coast of Tasmania, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Horse And Zebras

I was taking a photo of these Zebra Finches and could see the horse coming closer in the background and wondered whether it might wander past. I got myself into the right position at the right time and "Hooray".

This is the one photo, not one superimposed over another. I know you can't trust photos these days. I get as frustrated as anyone else with other people doctoring their photos - it's more common than you think. But this is the real deal as all my photos are, unless I make it clear otherwise.

Beaudesert, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Zebra Finches

Cute, cute, cute, cute! This photo was taken just moments after the one above with the horse in the background. It also has twice the focal length & half the depth of field of that one - thus the background is a lot more blurred - and the horse had just walked out of the frame.

Beaudesert, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Welcome Swallow

This Welcome Swallow wishes you a very warm welcome to Moreton Island. Enjoy your stay.

Moreton Island, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Silver Gull

It's better coming second than not at all. At least that is what life coaches tell these birds.

Moreton Island, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Black Kite

On the NSW bank of the mighty Murray River, this Black Kite dropped in for a cool drink of fresh water. I can’t say I was tempted to do the same.

Gol Gol, New South Wales, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Swanning Around

This cute family of Black Swans is feeding on reeds in the shallows. Mum was there too, although just off to the left.

St Helens, Tasmania, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Whistle While You Fish

There are quite a few Whistling Kites over on Moreton Island, including a pair that nest at Tangalooma Island Resort - can you blame them? This one has just caught a fish and is heading back to its nest for supper.

Moreton Island, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Blue-winged Kookaburra

I came across this Blue-winged Kookaburra in a tree overhanging a very mosquito-infested swamp. But what swamps aren't? The only problem was that the swamp wasn't in the plan so I had no insect repellant. Ahhhh!!!

Magnetic Island, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Western Corella

I watched a flock of Western Corellas tearing up a park one sunny afternoon in Rockingham. They seemed to be enjoying themselves. I was eating gelati so I certainly was! (Did you know 'gelati' is the plural of 'gelato'?)

Rockingham, Western Australia, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Hungry For Love

I watched these two Australian Pelicans feeding in Tallebudgera Creek and took some nice photos - but this was the funniest.

Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Freedom

This is an Australasian Pipit. We only spent a few moments together but it was memorable - well the photo is. The barbed wire is to keep the cows off the road, for their safety and ours, not for the birds. It's interesting that what restricts one provides a place of rest for another.

Wunjunga, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

The Evangelist

Good news: it's worth sharing. And really good news is worth declaring from the rooftops, or from wherever else that’s handy. I'm not sure what this Pied Butcherbird is crowing about but it certainly looks happy to be spreading the word. Preach it, brother!

Toowong Cemetery, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Don't Mind The Whimbrel

You might not know what a Whimbrel is. It's one of these.

Byron Bay, New South Wales, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Local Matters: ‘Unmarked’ Grave

Young Rodney (Crested Pigeon) warily perches upon an unmarked grave on his way home from one of the lower fields. It’s Thursday morning and I’m here to interview the locals about local matters. In his own words…

“You know, I don’t like thinking of this one here as being unmarked because I’ve done my bit to rectify that. It’s been a personal project of mine actually. I’m quite proud of it. A dollop here, a sprinkling there. Every bit helps, doesn’t it? I even eat different coloured foods, you know - adds a splash of colour - livens things up a little. Whoa!”

It was at this point Rodney was rudely interrupted and chased away by a cantankerous Currawong, who flatly refused to be interviewed.

Toowong Cemetery, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Female Red-capped Robin

"My husband’s quite the show-off, not that I really mind. I'm used to it already. It’s always look at me over here, look at me over there, kind of thing every single day from dawn until dusk. It’s just how he is. He doesn’t get tired of it! Sometimes I wish it was always dark so we could spend a bit more time together appreciating each other for who we are, you know, on the inside, rather than the outside. Speaking of which, how do I look?”

In her defense she was quietly sitting here and there while he was busily showing everyone (i.e. me and a disinterested Yellow-footed Rock-wallaby - see Wildlife) how dazzling he was. So I’ve posted a photo of her instead:)

Warren Gorge, South Australia, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Blue Bling, Do Your Thing

"Oh man, I can't believe I just found another blue lid. It must be my lucky day. This is gonna get me across the line for sure. Hello, Jenny. Bad luck, Jeremy! #winning #thatchpad” ~ pretty much any male Satin Bowerbird in Australia (that has a potential mate named Jenny and a rival named Jeremy)

Springbrook, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Little Corella Disco

These Little Corellas are living it up on the Sunshine Coast at their very own red light disco party. It’s very exclusive by the look of it. And for nibblies? Just go right ahead and take a bite out of the traffic lights - it’s what everyone else does. The bird on top would love to party with the others.

“Hey, Ronnie, can I join you two down there?”

“Oh, let me think about that for a second… NO!!!”

Coolum, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Australia's Rarest Bird. Ever.

This funny-looking bird might appear to be relatively ordinary, but that didn't stop hordes of bird-lovers from flying in from all over the country in 2014 just to see it. You think I'm joking, or at least exaggerating. I'm not. This Yellow Bittern was the first of its kind ever to be seen on mainland Australia, and for unknown reasons ended up at North Lakes, north of Brisbane. It was there for about a week and then it vanished, never to be eaten, I mean 'seen' again.

No I didn't eat the bird. That was a joke.

North Lakes, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Emu, Is That You?

There's an Emu in there somewhere, I'm certain of it! And you thought you had bad hair days.

Nambung National Park, Western Australia, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Damo The Rock Dove

Damo loves getting out - romantic strolls along the Yarra, scenic flights over the city, suit-shoots ie target practice - and can’t get enough of crumbs. Currently detached and looking for a mate - soul mate or otherwise. Three going on four, but the two year old within still finds its way to the surface often enough, so he’s always ready for a party. Doesn’t always fly with the flock but does the walk and does the talk. Direct descendant of William Of Orange. Interested applicants should make their way to Yarra Promenade across from the Sea Life Melbourne Aquarium around lunchtime. He’s always there.

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Rose Between Thorns

This Superb Fairy-wren is taking shelter in a thorny bush. The last time I tried that it didn't work out so well.

Dubbo, New South Wales, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Cape Barren Goose

I came across some Cape Barren Geese after a long day at the track taking photos of the world's best motorcycle riders. The geese weren't in anywhere near as much of a hurry.

Phillip Island, Victoria, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Apostlebird

I think these birds looks great - their feathers are so cool - and they hop about which looks pretty funny.

Dubbo, New South Wales, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Beach Combing Heron

This White-faced Heron combs a beach on Moreton Island for dinner.

Moreton Island, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Musk Lorikeet

Cute fan. Pity I wasn't a bit closer - the image is a bit grainy. Oh well.

Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Parading Peacock

This male Indian Peafowl aka peacock is doing what he does best - showing off to the ladies! If you’ve got feathers like these you’ve got to flaunt them. I know I would. Probably. Possibly. Perhaps. The fact that peacocks are loud and can be very annoying doesn’t diminish their brilliance one iota. They’re incredible to behold, not that even a peahen in the vicinity cared.

I once saw a peacock being attacked by a hippo. It lost some feathers but kept its life, but that’s another story
.

Launceston, Tasmania, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Rainbow Lorikeet

Rainbow Lorikeets are such beautiful birds. A bit noisy though, but who can't be at times?

Cedar Creek, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Butchering Bird

After watching a cute green caterpillar inch its way up a big tree, I was on the look-out for one I could get a closer photo of. This was the only other caterpillar I saw, not that I was the first one to see it. This Pied Butcherbird swooped right past me, close enough for me to feel the wind from its wings, then grabbed this unlucky guy from right in front of me. I was initially quite disappointed but then I took this nice lunch photo. I have to admit, I don't blame him - it does look pretty plump and juicy.

Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Would Lord Howe Woodhens?

Yes, thankfully they would. With only 250 Lord Howe Woodhens in their only native home, ensuring the survival of this cute but endangered bird is critical. So it’s good to see them getting to it and staying on top of things.

Lord Howe Island, New South Wales, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Wandering Tattler

This Wandering Tattler ceased wandering for a while and wound up at Froggy’s Beach, Snapper Rocks.

Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Australasian Darter

"I'm not a cormorant. I'm not! Everyone thinks I am. I'm faster, funnier, better looking, everything really. Even other birds think I'm one. Ahhh, the pain I've had to endure! I've never been a cormorant and I honestly don't ever want to be one. Education, people, it's all about educating yourself. Do us all a favour and learn a little. Please!"

I guess Australasian Darters can get a little tetchy. I thought it was a cormorant. Didn't you?

Bangalow, New South Wales, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Azure Kingfisher

Fast food. It clearly wasn't fast enough:)

Gold Creek, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Stone-cold Stare

Sometimes a look says it all. Sometimes it says too much:) Bush Stone-curlews never seem happy to see anyone, so I haven't taken it personally.

Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

Brown Falcon

Bo: “Yeah, I don’t mind it here actually. The one thing that made life miserable in the wild was rain, and if it rains now I just duck under my shelter here and it’s sorted. And I don’t miss chasing stuff. Out there there’s always the constant frustration of prey getting away - yeah, we might have incredible eyesight but that doesn’t mean we’re always great at catching it. We’re just great at watching it disappear time and time again. Ah here, at feeding time - if I can see it I can eat it, sort of thing - no mucking about ducking and weaving, getting sticks in the face and being laughed at by the Peregrines - it’s sorted. So I’m happy enough, and hey, what can I expect anyway being named after an old, unfashionable car?”

I very rarely take photos of captive animals, but I love this photo too much not to share it.

Darling Downs Zoo, Queensland, Australia

© Copyright Geoff Rankin

 

More photos coming soon.

 

PHOTOGRAPHY //  Nick Kyrgios | Sport | Concert | Event | People | Landscape | Wildlife | Macro | Birds | Nature | Flora | Misc | Video | Ekka | Artified | B&W | The Poems

Check out: Latest | Highlights | Really? Yes, Really!

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geoff@geoffrankin.com
www.geoffrankin.com

- Brisbane, Queensland, Australia -
© Copyright 2019 Geoff Rankin