Monday, November 29, 2010

Rifleman Nesting Time!

Well recently I have been going to Boundary Stream Mainland Island which is about a hours drive from Napier, its a great place to go to for bush birds plus it gets really good in the summer with lots of bird activity with nesting.
Late last year when I first got my camera I was walking back down one of the tracks and found a little rifleman hopping around on the ground getting nesting material to build a nest, they are great little birds to watch and the smallest in NZ.

This year I wanted to find another nest and spend a bit more time with them, I managed to find another nest because the one I found last year had broke in the recent heavy winds and rain.
Anyone that has seen a rifleman knows they are super quick but a very rewarding bird to photograph.
These shots are around the nest hole with the parents and chicks of last year bringing food to the young.

The Graceful Rifleman

North Island Rifleman

Showing off his Spider

Male Rifleman


Te Mata Peak after Dark

The Morepork's of the Peak

Well it started as I was walking back down from the peak one night as I heard a morepork calling, I thought it was a kid playing a practical joke as it sounded so fake and so close.
Later I went to have a closer look and there sure enough was a morepork 4meters in front of me so I quickly raced back home and got my camera.

When I got back to the peak I couldn't find him again so headed back home after a while of searching and practiced taking photos of trees and trunks in the dark, "even if I saw a bird I don't think I would have even got a shot in as I couldn't focus and it was way to dark"
So I had to think of new ways to improve and how I am going to take a shot of a night bird.

 An few days later I was walking back down the peak again and I had a morepork fly directly in front of me so I thought that the weekend coming I should go out and practice my night photography.

 Once I found the morepork and I had my camera I kept on coming back once a week and only for a hour or two around the evening so flash wasn't going to have as big of effect as it would during the night.

   The beautiful morepork but I over flashed this one plus it was the first night out.

Morepork (Ruru)

Morepork Calling
Carefully watches His Prey

Feather Grooming Even Happens Under the Cover of Night
Also when out and about up the peak I heard moreporks mating quite a bit but getting close was impossible I tried many times, even movement would scare them and they would fly off.
So Lucky one of the pair called in his mate and I managed to get a shot in of them mating but only just because they don't do it for long.

Movepork Mating