Winner: Prettiest bird contest

The Super Secret Judge has weighed in on the winner and two runners up for the Prettiest Bird Contest. (I am not the judge!) Here we have the top three birds (see all entries in this morning’s post):

The winner: The peacock, entered by Georgiana Hoffman:

The peacock [Pavo cristatus] is undoubtably the most beautiful bird, from the poms on his head to the eyes that swim on his vibrating tail. If he were only seen in his natural habitat, he would be the most sought after subject of photographs and film.

The first runner up: The Himalayan monal, submitted by Lou Jost:

Himalayan Monal: I love the riot of iridescence on this bird, shining simultaneously in almost every color of the spectrum; it is hard to imagine a greater contrast with the bleak monochrome snowscape of its
habitat in winter.  I’ve only seen these in captivity, but even then it stands out like a torch.

 

The second runner up:  The Knysna Lourie (Tauraco corythaix), chosen by reader Stuart MacLeod, who didn’t send a description except to note that the bird is African.  Here are two of the three submitted pictures:

 

There are no prizes, but my hearty thanks to everyone who took the trouble to send in a bird.

Now, start thinking about the World’s Ugliest Animal for the next contest.

11 Comments

  1. Benjamin Taylor
    Posted December 27, 2018 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

    “If he were only seen in his natural habitat, he would be the most sought after subject of photographs and film.”

    Such a good point. Peacocks are such a common sight around the world that seeing them has almost become mundane. But – if they were rare and hard to find, they would undoubtedly be considered amongst the greatest treasures of the natural world.

    The same is true of many beautiful but common plants and animals that I see everyday and take for granted.

    • Nicolaas Stempels
      Posted December 28, 2018 at 4:49 am | Permalink

      Sounds very true.
      What jungles we would not take on, dangerous rivers cross, treacherous mountains pass, to get a glimpse of this rare and beautiful blue peacock?
      We get kinda inured to the blinding beauty of the blue peacock indeed.
      Note, the blue or Indian peacock has a cousin, the green or Javanese peacock, which is nearly as dazzling.
      http://www.flickriver.com/photos/koulang/3594132151/

  2. Mark Sturtevant
    Posted December 27, 2018 at 2:20 pm | Permalink

    Remember though that all were awesome. Thank you, Super Secret Judge for trying! Too bad this can never go on your resume’.

  3. rickflick
    Posted December 27, 2018 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

    Appreciating these gorgeous animals is an excellent cure for any sense of dread or panic brought on by the political morass.

  4. grasshopper
    Posted December 27, 2018 at 3:46 pm | Permalink

    They are all absolutely gorgeous.

  5. Posted December 27, 2018 at 3:47 pm | Permalink

    Hearty congratulations to the winner and the runners up!

  6. Mark R.
    Posted December 27, 2018 at 6:46 pm | Permalink

    Good choices!

  7. Posted December 28, 2018 at 12:45 am | Permalink

    All things dull and ugly
    The Lord God made the lot!

    Monty Python, if I remember correctly.

    -Ryan

  8. Nicolaas Stempels
    Posted December 28, 2018 at 4:58 am | Permalink

    I’m glad the Knysna Lourie made it in the top three, it is an extremely beautiful green bird, but suddenly flashes red when if flies away.
    Still, there are a dozen or so birds of paradise *, and kolibris and sugarbirds and powderbreasts and kingfishers and many more that deserve a place in the top 3.
    I’m not dissing the secret judge, it was a great choice, but (s)he had a basically impossible task.

    *for those who missed it, I’ll post the link to Cornell’s Birds of Paradise Project again, I can watch that for hours, I’m sure you will enjoy!
    http://www.birdsofparadiseproject.org/

  9. gravelinspector-Aidan
    Posted December 28, 2018 at 6:08 am | Permalink

    Now, start thinking about the World’s Ugliest Animal for the next contest.

    I take it that the Tangerine Shitgibbon is already barred from entry?


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