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Painted Bunting

Image # 1D2_06755

Huntington Beach State Park


Canon 600L/f4 IS with 1.4x II Teleconverter

ISO 800, f/5.6, 1/250 second

Manual Exposure

Gitzo 1329/Arca Swiss B1/Wimberley Sidekick

We ran into some other photographers when we were heading out to the Boardwalk near the Education Center.  They were watching a bird feeder, and told us that Painted Buntings will often stop at this feeder.  While we were standing there, we saw one briefly fly by, and the colors were spectacular.  This was late afternoon, and so we decided we would return in the morning, when they were apparently more active.

So the next morning we arrived bright and early, set up our gear, and waited.  We spent about 2 hours there.  The male did come by a couple of times, but only perched briefly on the feeder, which had an ugly metal screen around it.  But as we waited for its return, I saw it come in, and it perched briefly on a wooden tree stump behind the feeder.  It took me a few seconds longer than I would have liked to locate it in my viewfinder, but was able to get a few shots before it took off.  This shot is the best of those frames.  I didn't notice it at the time, but I was intrigued to identify 4 different color bands on its legs, as it apparently has been included in quite a few studies of this beautiful species.