Rich Ditch's Photography Blog

September 12, 2009

Black-bellied Whistling Duck

Filed under: Birds, favorite places, Gilbert Water Ranch — richditch @ 8:22 pm
Black-bellied Whistling Duck

Black-bellied Whistling Duck

When we moved to Phoenix from NJ in 1994 I was happy to find Black-bellied Whistling Ducks in decent numbers near my new office in Chandler, AZ. Some could be found at a pond in a small park just down the road, and in some years a few even used a tiny pond on the corporate property.

But this species has become a lot harder to find around Phoenix, and when seen they are usually in very small numbers.

Recently we’ve had a single bird hanging around the Gilbert Water Ranch, usually mixed in with a small flock of Mallards. On a visit last week while looking for the Purple Gallinule I got a chance to get  a few shots of this duck separated from all the other duck species in the area.

I would like to have been a bit closer, and I struggled a little with the composition here. The horizontal shots I took had better balance, but to avoid clipping off part of the reflection I had to go with a vertical. And since I was farther away than I wanted I ended up cropping this to about 70% of the full frame to eliminate excess water.

Nikon D200, 300/2.8 plus TC20E (2x), ISO 500, 1/640th second at f/7.1.


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