Over recent days I have been sharing some photos and my experiences on a birding trip to Mannum a few weeks ago. This river town is about 20 minutes by car from my home. The afternoon was a classically beautiful Sunday afternoon in spring. To add to the wonderful weather the birding was also good.
I know that Silver Gulls are a very common bird here in Australia, but I do enjoy photographing them. The bird in the photo below was particularly photogenic, but I had to be quick with the camera as it was on the move. I’ve also included a few other photos taken on the same day.
Silver Gulls are the most common species of gull in Australia. They are found in all coastal regions around Australia as well as far inland near to water courses and lakes. Here in my home town of Murray Bridge in South Australia they are quite common along the River Murray which is about 4 kilometres from my home.
Last Saturday morning on my way down to the CBD of the town I needed to avoid hitting a Silver Gull feeding on, of all things, a dead rabbit in the middle of the road near our place. Silver Gulls are known for their scavenging habits, but this is the first time I’ve ever seen one eating a rabbit.
I didn’t have my camera with me at the time. My readers are probably relieved for that; the dead rabbit was not a pretty sight!
Over the last week I shown a series of photos of Silver Gulls. This is the last in that series. For the photographer gulls are often a very good subject for learning the skills of bird photography. Gulls are often quite confiding; you just have to produce some food – like chips – and you will soon have more subjects for your camera lens than you can cope with. On this occasion I didn’t need any food. I didn’t want large numbers of gulls. They were content to stay just a few metres away and let me snap away happily.
As with all photography, shooting birds requires appropriate lighting conditions. It was late afternoon – about an hour before sunset. The sun was almost directly behind me which was good – apart from needing to watch where my shadow fell.
Overall, I am very pleased with the result. I’m still trying to get that elusive stunning shot of a gull in flight. Gulls are ideal subjects for that too. I’ll just need to be patient.
These Silver Gulls posed in a wonderful way for my camera two weekends ago. I was on the beach at Encounter Bay at Victor Harbor on the south coast of South Australia. It was late in the afternoon, about an hour before sunset. I think this one is worth printing and mounting in a frame. I just love the clean colours of mature birds like this.