One of my little bird friends
This very vocal house sparrow paid me a visit while I was at a local golfing range. It took me a while to figure out where the bird calls were coming from. I then looked up to a small hole in the side panel of a metal siding and there it was – the House Sparrow. Standing proud, letting its presence be known – for a very long time. The birds calls went on for about 20 minutes. I also noticed that there were two sparrows flying in and outside of that same hole. As I began to survey the other buildings there were indeed more sparrows nests inside tiny holes.
The house sparrow
The picture above is of an adult male house sparrow. The black patch is what gives it away as being male. They are found in man-made structures located in cities, suburbs and farms. Seeds and easy accessible insects are its main source of foods. I have also noticed that they LOVE my bird feeder. There isn’t a day that goes by that I do not see a sparrow; the house sparrow is very popular in my back yard. Since both parents feed the nestlings, it was no surprise that I had noticed the two birds flying back and forth from the same nest. They also have seem to adapted their diet to include human food or the crumbs left over.
To catch a nice photo of this particular bird took patience. I didn’t mind because I was sitting and enjoying the outside golfing area while my husband swung at a few golf balls. Of course I had my camera with me and to my luck, the right lens too! I used a prime lens for this shot. The prime lens worked out for me in this case becuae of the closeness of the animal. There were about 5 or 6 house sparrows in the area, flying about back and forth between different structures and trees. I decided that the best thing to do would be to wait until one of them landed near me. The other option would be to try and chase the with the camera.
After a few trial and errors, I’ve learned that sometimes its best to let the birds (or any other type of wildlife) to come to you. The sparrow pictured above started off on the ground about 5 feet away from me. I took a few photos of the bird but the dirty asphalt background proved to be a bit distracting. It then jumped onto a stair case about the same distance away and that is when I took the photo above. It was there for about 30 seconds. I used center point auto focus and semi-wide aperture. I cropped the photo a bit and used the rule-of-thirds ratio to create a sense of balance. It was very easy to lock focus on the bird because it posed for me very well- a full 30 seconds!
On a final note
It amazes me how the house sparrow has adapted its way of life to include man and man made structures. Call it survival I guess. It makes me wonder what dwellings did they use before man started to make modern buildings and their diet before man started leaving crumbs on the ground. If you take a step back, animals are truly smart, adaptable, and progressive creatures. My little bird friends have found some way to co-exist with us without complaints. Another thing that I have noticed about the house sparrow is the variation of black patch area on the breast of the bird. Some have strong and prominent wide patches and others have small densly colored black patches. Looking at the patch is a great way to distinguish this songbird when ever you see it flying about in your neighborhood.
To hear one of the many calls of the House Sparrow – click here (please note, clicking link will play audio)
90mm 1/400sec f/6.3 ISO 100