While I love this blog, I now pretty much only write on my other two blogs: BirdingBlogs.com and 10,000 Birds - I would love to see you there!

Sunday, 4 April 2010

Digiscoping Capercaille up close

The Capercaille (Auerhuhn/Auerhahn) is an incredibly beautiful bird, but very seldomly seen in Tirol. We are just starting to enter the display/breeding time (Balzzeit) here in the Alps, but as a species they seem to be really struggling. Part of the issue is how the Alpine forests have changed over the past few decades, with much fewer cattle in the forests and a more intensive use of the forests. The large majority of our forests are controlled and managed by the Austrian state forestry company dedicated to maximisation of wood production, which does not exactly bode well for species that need open forest systems with canopy gaps and open areas for free flight. Wire fences and the intensive use of the forests (particularly in winter) have also made their lives harder.



Being able to see two Capercaille up close in the Alpenzoo a couple of weeks ago, afforded a great opportunity to take some close-up photos of a beautiful male Capercaille.



All photos taken with a Canon EOS 5D mark II, a Swarovski Optik STM80 HD spotting scope, and a TLS800 telephoto digiscoping adapter.

Happy digiscoping,
Dale

13 comments:

eileeninmd said...

Great post and closeup photos of the Capercaille. I love being able to see birds from around the world. Thanks for sharing.

Wren said...

Nice close look - the red eye stripe is quite striking. Incredible to see the feather close up, too. amazing what you can do with a scope.

On the other hand, I am sorry to hear you're struggling with some of the same habitat issues we are.

Martha Z said...

Wonderful shots, I envy you your equipment.

The Early Birder said...

Excellent portraits Dale. FAB.

Maria Berg said...

I like your photos, it is good to come close to the bird by the camera, MB

Chris said...

Hi Dale,
Wow these close up are really cool. I love the last image where you can see the eye so beautifully!! This species is very nice and I guess you were happy to spot it!

Bob Kaufman said...

Outstanding close-up shots, Dale! I never imagined a 5d Mk II being used in digiscoping. Well done.

Larry said...

Astonishing close-ups of the Capercaille Dale! The feather detail is just incredible.

I'm also sorry to hear of the environmental issues happening there as they are here and around the world.

Lana Gramlich said...

Wonderful close up of the feathers. Thanks for sharing these beautiful birds & for educating your readers about their plight.

James said...

Very nice caper action Dale. After moaning on my blog about grouse i'd kill for views like this of a caper. Mine have all been distant and/or brief

Nicole said...

Wonderful photos of that impressive bird!
I was hoping to see one in Hungary (supposedly they are still there), but I guess I have to hope some borders next time we are home ;)

I hope they find a way to survive us humans!

Debra said...

What a beautiful bird! These are such fantastic captures! I'm so glad I found your blog and I can't wait to look through all of your photos.

Stu said...

The only time I ever saw one of these was from a speeding car window as we crossed from bavaria into Austria........