Posts

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Who Shot it Best?

We are happy to announce the winners of our Who Shot it Best photo contest. Congratulations to Kristy Leigh Baker whose photograph of an American Goldfinch garnered the most votes from over 3,000 entries!

Congratulations are also in store for Pia Niewoonder, the new owner of a free pair of Zeiss binoculars! Pia was selected at random from over 2,400 entrants, winning a pair of TERRA ED 8×32 Zeiss binoculars. Upon winning, Pia remarked, “Wow—these are so awesome!! Thank you, I’m really enjoying them!”

Stay tuned for more photo contests like this—you too could win a free pair of binoculars or other cool swag.

BirdsEye would like to thank Zeiss for sponsoring our contest.

Zeiss Sports Optics
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Best Bird Photos From March

Every day, BirdsEye users submit beautiful bird photos from around the world. The images are verified and incorporated into our apps to help our users better identify species as they birdwatch. The following images are a collection of our staff’s favorite pics submitted to our BirdsEye.photo site in 2019.

Have a favorite image in our apps that you’d like to see featured? Email us at info@birdsinthehand.com.

Snapping My Dream Shot

By Shiva Kumar

My passion for photography grew to extreme levels when I moved to the forest. I knew right away that I wanted to live my life as a full-time nature photographer. Nature photography is an art, but it is also about education: An image graphically captures a decisive moment in time and helps explain the world in which we live. I want to tell a story with my pictures to help preserve the wonders of the natural world—I feel blessed by nature when I get my dream shots.

I captured one of my dream shots recently when I found an Indian peafowl (Pavo cristatus), the Indian National Bird, at Osman Sagar, a lake in the Indian city of Hyderabad. I was working during the golden hours—early morning around sunrise—and was wondering if I could capture a picture of the dawn. Then I saw the peafowl. I was mesmerized and captured this shot. The photograph tells a story of how a bird interacts with its natural surroundings. And shortly after that, nearly 150 of the birds settled at this sacred place!

Shiva Kumar explains how he photographs birds and wildlife in India. He discusses how he captured his dream shot of an Indian peafowl (Pavo cristatus)

An Indian peafowl (Pavo cristatus) at Osman Sagar, a lake in Hyderabad, India, at sunrise.
(All photographs courtesy of Shiva Kumar)

Tips on Wildlife Photography

Knowing the habitat helps us understand the birds we see in them. Try and visit as many different habitats as you can. Forests, farmland, scrub, lakes, reed-beds, rivers, coasts—all have their own characteristic birds. The edges of fields, streams, and rivers are all excellent spots to see birds. The best time to see birds is sunrise to early morning, and then again in the mid and late afternoons; birds tend to rest during the day.

At places like lakes, we can observe birds throughout the day. While it is possible to watch birds at any time and any place, it is helpful to know when and where to look. When I shot the peafowl, most of the bird activity occurred in the opening and the edge of the forest near human habitation. Most of the species in the area were either insectivores or omnivores feeding mainly on the ground in open patches. The birds preferred the forest edge, which provided them with mixed habitats, open spaces to feed in, and suitable perching points to capture the aerial prey.  

When we think of bird photography, we think of tight-cropped, detailed pictures of birds. However, using silhouettes in wildlife photography can provide beautiful and artistic photos. Bird photos created using silhouette photography techniques can produce stunning images, especially at sunrise or sunset.

Shiva Kumar

Shiva Kumar is a professional wildlife photographer & Wikipedian from India. He uses innovation and technology to achieve fresh perspectives in his work and is passionate about wildlife conservation. You can follow Shiva on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

August updates to photo site

In mid-August we released an update to the birdseye.photo website where we curate the images that appear in the various BirdsEye apps. These updates were targeted towards making it easier to see what is available in the apps, and supporting photo submissions for Dragonflies, Butterflies, and Bumble bees. As you can see in the gallery below, each category of species now has its own homepage if you are interested in just seeing submissions and photos from that category. When you submit your photos for dragonflies, you’ll now get a list of variants that make sense for that category, such as adult male, female (male-like), teneral, and more.

A mobile icon is now superimposed in the bottom left corner of any photos that appear in the apps. You can curate the best photos to feature in the apps by clicking on “Suggest Changes” under a photo and suggesting that a photo be included or excluded from mobile apps. Our goal is to include several high quality images for each class of a species (adult male, male in non-breeding plumage, female, teneral, immature, etc.) in the app, and you can help us get there!

 

Another improvement is that your photographer page now lists how many of your photos appear in the app, as well as how many photos you have in each of the categories (birds, dragonflies, butterflies and bumble bees). Another great way to track what you have been photographing!

View which photos of yours appear in the apps, and how many photos of each category you've submitted.

View which photos of yours appear in the apps, and how many photos of each category you’ve submitted.