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North Island Kaka - (Nestor Meridionalis)
North Island Kaka - (Nestor Meridionalis)

Photograph Information Photographer's Comments
Challenge: Wildlife II (Advanced Editing IV*)
Camera: Kodak DX3215
Location: Karori Wildlife Sanctuary, Wellington, NZ
Date: Jan 23, 2006
Aperture: f4.6
ISO: 140
Shutter: 1/60
Galleries: Nature, Animals
Date Uploaded: Jan 23, 2006

The Kaka is a forest parrot with a fairly dull colouration and a long curved beak. It has a distinctive pale crown and crimson/rust underwings, rump and collar. The North Island subspecies is mainly olive-brown in colour, with darker feather edges and a grey, pale crown. This species is endemic to New Zealand.

Kari1, KiwiNick, Francie and I spent an afternoon and evening in the Karori Wildlife Sanctuary where some extremely rare and endangered species have been gathered in their natural habitat.

Kari1 had the 'big' camera (it was her turn) and so I got out the 1.3 megapixel Kodak P&S. It turned out to be the Little Camera That Could. The Kaka were at a feeding station so it was a good place to sit quietly and wait. The trouble is, if you've ever used one of these cameras, they're super wide angle so I was forced to stalk this bird sitting in the branch. I must have been only 6 feet from it when it took flight and I reflex-shot it.

Karori Wildlife Sanctuary - A world-first

A predator-proof fence, specifically designed to exclude 14 species of non-native mammals, ranging from possums to mice, encircles the 8.6km perimeter.

Many species of threatened native wildlife are introduced. The little spotted kiwi - one of our rarer kiwi - has already been released. So too has the Tuatara, the only surviving dinosaur period species on the planet.

The Sanctuary is developed as a major education, research and recreational site for the benefit of all.

Post Processing:- Very little, this is only a 1.3 megapixel file and I have cropped about 25% out. Some brightness, a little contrast and USM

Place: 191 out of 261
Avg (all users): 5.0375
Avg (commenters): 5.7273
Avg (participants): 4.9558
Avg (non-participants): 5.0821
Views since voting: 766
Views during voting: 402
Votes: 320
Comments: 13
Favorites: 0

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02/02/2006 11:24:56 PM
::: Greetings from Critique Club :::

Hi, as requested, here is an in-depth critique of your submission.

First Impression - the most important one:

This a very good capture of this bird in flight. Nice action shot.


Not as strong as it could be. The most distracting part of the composition is that the bird has nowhere to fly. Objects in motion in a composition need room to continue their path. Another composition flaw that this is creating is that the wing cuts the image almost directly in half, violating the Rule of Thirds.


Subject is nice and well defined by light level differences. Id like to see a bit less DoF, but I see this was shot with a P&S camera, so that expectation is hard to meet. Overall, though subject is good.

Technical (Color, focus, and light):

Focus is sharp and detail is clear.

Color Its ok, but may have been washed out a bit due to a bit too much flash. Maybe boosting saturation in Post-processing would help.

Light a bit too much flash, but overall lighting is good.

To grow its vote?:

Not entirely sure this convinced the voters that the bird was wild. A bit less crop might have convinced them, but Im not sure how well that would have worked either.


Nice action shot, needs a bit of work on composition, but overall was a nice capture.

Hope to see more from you soon,


  Photographer found comment helpful.
02/02/2006 06:53:39 AM
I didn't even realise it was your shot and I scored you a 7. I liked it, agree with the other comments about the flash, but what can you do with a smaller camera, I think it came out well!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
 Comments Made During the Challenge
01/31/2006 03:22:51 PM
wow i have never seen a bird like that in the wild
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/31/2006 11:58:22 AM
Great shot, the flash needs to be toned down a little
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/28/2006 11:46:50 AM
Nice shot. May be a tad oversharpened? Great capture, though!
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/28/2006 02:32:05 AM
great composition, perhaps some contrast can highlight the bird more...
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/28/2006 01:44:27 AM
a great shot of the bird itself - blends too well with the background
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/27/2006 02:33:43 PM
feathers on wings are a tad blurry, otherwise great capture
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/27/2006 01:48:07 AM
good shot mate
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/25/2006 10:58:10 PM
Good action shot. The flash was a little too intense.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/25/2006 12:24:39 PM
The main subject looks out of focus and there is too much contrast due to flash lighting. The bird eye is reflecting green or amber from the flash which is as bad as red-eye. While there is some interest in seeing the subject frozen in flight there is just too much quality lost as a result of flash, IMO. From a photo of the same subject that I viewed prior to this, that also suffered from flash lighting, I get the idea that this subject is in a very low-light environment and difficult to capture.
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/25/2006 03:23:08 AM
To much flash...
  Photographer found comment helpful.
01/25/2006 01:44:02 AM
Just so beautiful ... stunning capture ... it was a quick bird
  Photographer found comment helpful.

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