Readers’ wildlife photos

As my collection is in Chicago, I can post only photos sent to me in the last two days. But Stephen Barnard of Idaho came through. His note:

Belted Kingfisher (Megaceryle alcyon) diving and coming up with the goods.


  1. Taskin
    Posted June 4, 2017 at 8:11 am | Permalink

    Wonderful photos! Kingfishers are always a thrill to see.

  2. Debbie Coplan
    Posted June 4, 2017 at 8:16 am | Permalink

    a fantastic set of photos–really exciting to see the kingfisher concentrating before the dive and then see the catch.

  3. Posted June 4, 2017 at 8:27 am | Permalink

    Amazing photos. What camera setup was the photographer using!

    • Stephen Barnard
      Posted June 4, 2017 at 8:30 am | Permalink

      Canon 5D3, Canon 500mm f4

      • Posted June 4, 2017 at 1:23 pm | Permalink

        Thanks. I hope to be able to take such beautiful pictures one day, but still have a long way to go!

  4. Randy schenck
    Posted June 4, 2017 at 8:50 am | Permalink

    Just a guess but I suspect Stephen took more than a few shots here and then picked out the ones he wanted. To catch this action is really hard.

    • Stephen Barnard
      Posted June 4, 2017 at 9:02 am | Permalink

      I took quite a few shots, but the dive and the catch are all of a piece.

  5. rickflick
    Posted June 4, 2017 at 10:38 am | Permalink

    It looks like it caught an insect rather than the expected fish. Were you able to ID the prey? Did it enter the water or grab it in the air? I’m expecting to see water droplets. Curious readers want to know.

    • Stephen Barnard
      Posted June 4, 2017 at 10:47 am | Permalink

      The prey is a rainbow trout fry.

  6. Posted June 4, 2017 at 11:44 am | Permalink

    Amazing pictures, Stephen! You are easily #1 in my book.

  7. Mark R.
    Posted June 4, 2017 at 12:08 pm | Permalink

    Beautiful bird! A nice trout fry snack.

  8. Gregory Kusnick
    Posted June 4, 2017 at 12:31 pm | Permalink

    “my collection is in Chicago”

    As someone who has outlived many disk drives, I can’t help hearing this as “my collection is vulnerable to single-point failure”.

    May I suggest Dropbox or some other cloud-based backup system as a way of both protecting against disaster and making your collection accessible from anywhere.

    • Posted June 4, 2017 at 7:09 pm | Permalink

      Everything is backed up every day; no danger of loss.

      • Stephen Barnard
        Posted June 4, 2017 at 8:56 pm | Permalink

        I’d suppose the University of Chicago has a good backup system. It would still be handy to put your data in the cloud, though, as Gregory Kusnick suggests, so you can access them them on the road.

        By the way, when I worked at NASA in the mid-90s they backed up everything on huge robotic tape silos. They were so big you could walk into them — they used digital tape cartridges that were accessed by robots. The latency for a restore was large (hours), and the capacity of each one was one terabyte. I have a two terabyte SSD on my MacBook Pro laptop now, the latency is close to zero, and I’m running out of space. 🙂

  9. Heather Hastie
    Posted June 4, 2017 at 6:59 pm | Permalink

    Wonderful Stephen, as always.

  10. Posted June 4, 2017 at 9:18 pm | Permalink

    Reblogged this on Mick E Talbot Poems and commented:
    superb kingfisher shots!

  11. Posted June 4, 2017 at 11:27 pm | Permalink

    very cool shots.. we have maybe a couple of breeding pairs around us, NZ kingfisher, kotare (Todiramphus sanctus) no breeding going on so not a lot of calling just hanging, awaiting a feeding opportunity perhaps.

    • Stephen Barnard
      Posted June 5, 2017 at 12:04 am | Permalink

      I have the misfortune of having possibly the least colorful and the spookiest kingfishers in the world.

  12. Diane G.
    Posted June 5, 2017 at 3:22 am | Permalink

    Spectacular! And such a cool species.

  13. Posted June 5, 2017 at 7:09 am | Permalink

    Great shots, Stephen, lovely.

  14. Posted June 5, 2017 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

    Your work is simply stunning, Stephen.

  15. Posted June 5, 2017 at 4:09 pm | Permalink

    Amazing shots.

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