Humans are fascinated with birds. Across the globe millions of people devote their time to watching and photographing birds. What is it about birds that makes them so interesting to people? Are we fascinated by their ability to fly or are we enthralled by their amazing diversity. Here we have 25 photographs of birds in all their splendour and I think these pictures speak for themselves.
Thank you to all the photographers who submitted photographs this week, it is your efforts that keep us all inspired! To be in the running for next week’s Top 25 you can submit photographs on the Facebook page with species, location, and photographer as the caption. Also, follow us on Twitter for regular updates and on Instagram to learn more about the birds that we featured this week!
A Southern Red-billed Hornbill preening its feathers. This species occurs in southern Africa, up to Malawi and Zambia. This hornbill was photographed in South Africa’s Kruger National Park by Michal Richter
The Black-capped Kingfisher’s brilliant blue feathers used to be highly sought after for the making of women’s hats, fans and ornaments. In this picture you can see why, the feathers are really quite eye-catching! Photograph by Nitin A Chavan
Long-legged Buzzards have been known to take advantage of fires to catch escaping small mammals. Photograph by Zafer Tekin
During the breeding season, Great Barbets will bow their heads and wag their tails to their mate as part of a courtship ritual. This photograph was taken by Aravind Venkatraman in Sattal, India
During the breeding season, Great Crested Grebes prefer waterbodies lined with vegetation, this is because they lay their eggs on top of floating aquatic plants. Photograph by Saswat Mishra
In North America and Eurasia Short-eared Owls typically breed in the marshlands, tundra and grasslands of the northern latitudes, they then over-winter further south. This individual was photographed within its over-wintering range (Haryana, India) by Gaurav Budhiraja
The Great White Egrets of Australia, South America, India, south-east Asia and Africa do not migrate for the winter but in North America and central Eurasia they do. However, there is now evidence that populations in parts of the Europe are now remaining for the winter, this is thought to be due to global warming and changes to the agricultural regime. Photograph by Wasif Yaqeen
A parade of Brown-headed Gulls photographed in Surat, India by Mukesh Mitra
These striking Grey-crowned Cranes are considered Africa’s most abundant crane. But this is changing, habitat degradation, especially of their wetland breeding sites, has resulted in the population decreasing by over 50%. Grey-crowned Cranes are now listed as endangered on the IUCN Red List. Photograph by Owen Deutsch
Rusty-cheeked Scimitar Babblers spend most of their foraging time in the undergrowth, feeding on insects, seeds and berries. Photograph by Vishal Monakar
A Great White Egret beautifully captured against the clouds. Photograph by Leslie Reagan
Indian Peafowl are very common in India but the population as a whole is declining, mainly due to hunting for feathers and the use of pesticides in crop fields where they feed. Photograph by Goutam Mitra
The Grey Francolin can often be found near village crops where they feed on seeds, shoots and insects. Photograph by Pranesh Kodancha
Unlike some wader species, the Temminck’s Stint will peck prey directly off the ground rather than probe into the soil. Photograph by Raj Kamal Das
A male Black-rumped Woodpecker trying to approach a female. During courtship males have been seen feeding insects to the female, perhaps this woodpecker needs to try this strategy! Photograph by Shantharam Holla
A beautiful habitat shot of a Lesser Sandplover foraging. This is an adult in non-breeding plumage, during the breeding season they will have a bright rufous patch across the neck. Photograph by Amit Kumar Bal
An Indian Nightjar perched quietly on a branch. Photograph by Rajat Mehta
Northern Long-eared Owls do not build their own nests but rather make use of abandoned stick nests of other species, such as cows and magpies. Photograph by Carlo Galliani
The Malabar Pied Hornbill occurs only in the woodlands of India. Photograph by Sathya Vagale
The Steppe Eagle is fairly common in parts of its range but their range has decreased to such an extent that they are now considered endangered. This is largely as their steppe habitat has been converted to agriculture, they are also persecuted and are vulnerable to collisions with powerlines and wind turbines. Photograph by Adhirup Ghosh
A Short-eared Owl photographed beautifully by Viren Bachu Desai in Gujarat, India
The Temminck’s Stint breeds in the tundras of Eurasia and over-winter in India, south-east Asia and central Africa. Photograph by Amit Kumar Bal
White-throated Kingfishers begin breeding when the monsoon season starts, males can then be seen on prominent perches, calling and displaying to females. Photograph by Gaurav Budhiraja
A beautiful Malabar Whistling-thrush photographed in the Western Ghats of India by Shantharam Holla
Here we have a Red-breasted Flycatcher photographed in it’s over-wintering habitat, Nilgiris, India. This species breeds in central and western Europe and migrates to India and Pakistan for the winter. Photograph by Praveen Eshwarappa
Our mission is to build a global community around the freedom and beauty of birds in the wild as ambassadors for the natural ecosystems that they depend upon. They are the music, decoration, and character of every terrestrial habitat on the planet and have been around since the dinosaurs. They are the witnesses and ambassadors of the awesome power of nature. The wide availability of good, cheap optics has opened their world to us for the last few decades. Amazing, affordable DSLR cameras with long lenses are delivering brilliant digital bird imagery to online communities.
We are in a day-and-age during which more bird species are threatened with extinction than ever before. The Wild Birds! Revolution aims to publish the “Top 25 Wild Bird Photographs of the Week” to 1 million people every week by the end of the year. That is a revolution that will change the world! Join thousands of other weekend naturalists, photographers, birders, experts, hikers, nature-lovers, guides, scientists, conservationists and artists that share the thousands of wild bird photographs submitted to the Wild Bird Trust website and Facebook page. Thousands of wild bird enthusiasts are going out every day to photograph our planet’s beautiful birdlife. Pick up your camera, fill your bird feeder, open your heart, and join the Wild Birds! Revolution!!
Edited by Christie Craig, Campaign Manager