Photo Stories

Photo Story: Loggerhead Shrike

The Loggerhead Shrike is a predatory song bird with unusual hunting habits.  The Loggerhead Shrike uses its strong curved beak to kill its prey or it kills its prey by impaling it on thorns or barbed wire fences.   It also leaves the prey to hang on these hooks for eating at a later time.

Loggerhead Shrike

Loggerhead Shrike

Like the Northern Shrike, the Loggerhead Shrike has a distinctive mask across its eyes.  The eye mask on the Loggerhead Shrike extends further forward toward the beak than the Northern Shrike.  The Northern Shrike is also slightly larger than the Loggerhead Shrike.

While photographing birds at Corkscrew Swamp, a fellow bird photographer told me about a rookery near Corkscrew that few tourists knew about.  After photographing the rookery, I was slowly driving back to the main road when I noticed this Loggerhead Shrike sitting on a concrete post.

When out photographing birds, it often pays to chat with other photographers.  They can give you tips on bird sightings and bird photography destinations.

Photo Details

Camera: Canon 5D Mark III
Lens: Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II Lens with 1.4x III Telephoto Extender
Focal Length: 490mm
ISO:  640
Aperture:   f/8.0
Shutter Speed: 1/1000 of a second
Exposure Compensation: 0
Lighting: Sunny, Late Morning.

Processing

  • Cropped the photo in Lightroom 5.
  • Removed some unsightly fencing from the background by using the transform tools and a layer mask in Photoshop CC 2014.  Click here to see the technique.
  • Used Viveza 2 to selectively lighten the darken the image.
  • Applied the Lighten/Darken Center Filter in Color Efex Pro 4.
  • Selectively removed noise from the photo using Topaz DeNoise.
  • Selectively sharpened the photo using the Unsharp Mask Filter in Photoshop CC 2014 reusing the layer mask from the previous step.

Written by Martin Belan

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