Killdeer – Wash, Fluff and Dry

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Last week I photographed a Killdeer (Charadrius vociferus) bathing at Farmington Bay Wildlife Management Area in Davis County, Utah. I was in a mobile blind (vehicle) and the shorebird was quite comfortable in my presence. I used my Nikon D300, resting on my Noodle, f6.3, ISO 400, Nikkor 200-400mm VR with 1.4x TC at 400mm, 0.0 EV and my shutter speed ranged from 1/1600 to 1/2000. The images are posted in sequential order.

Killdeer bathing – The Killdeer was bathing when we first pulled up and it stopped momentarily.

Killdeer bathing – It soon began bathing again, vigorously. I like the flying water droplets and how the water is running off of the birds back.

Killdeer bathing – The Killdeer would press its body into the water and then rise back up.

Killdeer bathing – Then it would spread out its wings a bit.

Killdeer bathing – Sometimes the Killdeer would dip its head into the water, twist it and fling water over its back. While I wish that some of the water wasn’t in front of the eye blocking the catchlight I am happy that the bird had its eye open in this frame. I love the action shown here.

Killdeer bathing – The Killdeer also bobbed its body up and down without immersing its whole body.

Killdeer bathing – I liked this image because I caught the bill open.

Killdeer bathing – I like the great eye contact in this frame.

Killdeer bathing – And the fluffed up feathers in this frame.

Killdeer bathing – Even 1/1600 wasn’t fast enough to stop the motion blur of the feathers but it did freeze most of the water droplets.

Killdeer bathing – Then the Killdeer stood up and called.

Killdeer bathing – Turned its back and gave us an over the shoulder look…

Killdeer bathing – And it began to preen.

Killdeer bathing – I thought this was a funny pose.

Killdeer bathing – And this one too!

Killdeer bathing – The bird moved away from the water and gave itself a final fluff before it flew away.

Mia McPherson, OntheWingPhotography.com

Mia McPherson

Mia McPherson

Mia McPherson is a nature lover, wildlife watcher and an avian photographer. Mia first become serious about bird photography when she moved to Florida in 2004. Her recent move to the Salt Lake area of Utah was a great opportunity to continue observing their behavior and photographing them. With so many birds species there easily accessible it wasn’t long before she was hooked. By learning more about each species, she can anticipate their behaviour and create opportunities to obtain ever better images of those species.

Mia McPherson

Mia McPherson

Mia McPherson is a nature lover, wildlife watcher and an avian photographer. Mia first become serious about bird photography when she moved to Florida in 2004. Her recent move to the Salt Lake area of Utah was a great opportunity to continue observing their behavior and photographing them. With so many birds species there easily accessible it wasn’t long before she was hooked. By learning more about each species, she can anticipate their behaviour and create opportunities to obtain ever better images of those species.

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Lee

Great shots of a great bird!

Mia McPherson

Thank you Lee!

Jobjr
Jobjr

They are a blast to watch, saw them mating tonight in Michigan

Carol Duke
Carol Duke

What an intimate encounter Mia and so well documented. Fabulous eye-contact. Beautiful photography.

Mia McPherson

Thanks you Carol, I was happy the bird was so cooperative

Margaret Adamson

Absolutely wonderful sequence of photos.  You were in the right place at the right time.  Many thanks for sharing.

Mia McPherson

Thanks Margaret, I was indeed at the right place at the right time!