Advances in digital photography have given us the opportunity to capture the beauty and freedom of birds in the wild like never before. In January 2011, the Wild Bird Trust set up a Facebook page with the intention of celebrating free flight and birds in the wild from around the world. Here are the “Top 25 Wild Bird Photographs of the Week” drawn from thousands of photographs submitted to the Wild Bird Trust. Almost 15,000 photographs from 87 photographers from around the world have been emailed to us or posted on our Facebook wall so far. Celebrate the freedom and splendor of birds in the wild with us and stimulate positive change by sharing how beautiful the birds of the world really are with the world…


Please join the Wild Bird Trust page on Facebook or follow us on Twitter to receive all wild bird photo updates and join the Wild Bird Revolution. Submit your own photos and become part of this important effort to bring the magic of wild birds to the world. Prepare to be blown away every week…


Lennart Hessel

Northern Shoveler looking beautiful in the bright light while cruising past the photographer (Lennart Hessel)

Leon Botha

The elusive Pel's fishing owl on a perch. It is a gift to see these amazing owl... (Leon Botha)

Rob Aspeling

Thick-billed weaver putting the finishing touches to a beautiful nest cup in the reeds... (Rob Aspeling)

Vanessa Stephens

Cape gannet sunset spectacular! Amazing scenes from Bird island near Cape Town (South Africa) (Vanessa Stephens)

Adam Riley /

Rhinoceros hornbill flying above Kinabatangan River in Borneo (Malaysia). Simply breath-taking! (Adam Riley /

Lennart Hessel

Mute swan looking at a perfect reflection... Pure white perfection (Lennart Hessel)

Adam Riley /

Rueppell's Griffon landing in Ndutu (Tanzania). These threatened vultures occur throughout the Sahel region of central Africa. (Adam Riley /

Adam Riley /

Green hermit in the Enchanted Garden (Colombia). They inhabit forest undergrowth, usually near water, and prefers hilly areas. (Adam Riley /

Rob Aspeling

The amazing ground hornbill is the largest hornbill species on earth and a specialist at hunting large snakes and rodents on the ground. (Rob Aspeling)

Sharon Brink

Spotted Eagle Owl looking at the photographer from a quiet roost site in a nearby tree. (Sharon Brink)

Markus Lilje /

Rosy-faced Lovebird from Namibia and Angola are a sight to behold... (Markus Lilje /

Lennart Hessel

Spotted thick-knee resting in the shade during a hot day... These intelligent birds will even fake injuries to lead predators away from the nest. (Lennart Hessel)

Sanette Venter Forbes

Southern yellow-billed hornbill in the Kruger National Park (South Africa). An impressive resident of the dry savanna bushveld... (Sanette Venter Forbes)

Adam Riley

Eastern Yellow-billed hornbill from Shaba National Park (Kenya). These are very different from their southern African cousins... (Adam Riley)

Horned puffin on a cliff on the Pribilof Islands (Alaska, USA). Amazing little creatures... (Art Wolfe / Art Wolfe Stock)

Erika Gouws

Communal living in the Kruger National Park (South Africa)... Weavers surrounding an Egyptian goose. (Erika Gouws)

Karel Mauer

Short-eared Owl near the Dutch coast. They are listed as declining in the southern portion of their range. (Karel Mauer)

Ralph Pollack

African darter with a small fish speared by its sharp bill. They have a double joint in their neck that allows them to use it like a speargun... (Ralph Pollack)

Antero Topp

Rock Ptarmigan in Kiilopää (Finland). It is known simply as Ptarmigan in Europe and colloquially as Snow Chicken or Partridge in North America, where it is the official bird for the territory of Nunavut, Canada (Antero Topp)

Tony Wilson

Secretary birds have been expending their range throughout southern Africa. This photograph was taken near Dullstroom (South Africa) (Tony Wilson)

Pema G. Bhutia

Great Barbet photographed near Sikkim (India). This is the largest barbet in the world... (Pema G. Bhutia)

Adam Riley /

Kelp goose from Carcass Island in the Falkland Islands. There are about 15,000 breeding pairs in existence. (Adam Riley /

Ron Rijs

Adult Bateleur perched at a viewpoint. These graceful raptors are reputed to have the best eyesight due to their arriving at carcasses first and removing the eyes before flying away... (Ron Rijs)

Rob Aspeling

African paradise flycatcher sitting on his nest cup hidden in the dense leaves... (Rob Aspeling)

Art Wolfe /

A Golden Eagle chick sitting in the nest (Alaska, USA). These regal raptors will be a symbol of the American wild forever... (Art Wolfe /


See the last “Top 25 Wild Bird Photographs of the Week” blog post on National Geographic News Watch:



The Wild Bird Trust was founded in South Africa in August 2009 with the primary objective of keeping birds safe in the wild. The trust aims to encourage the use of flagship endangered bird species as “ecosystem ambassadors” in their indigenous habitat. The trust focusses on linking ordinary people with conservation action in the field through innovative marketing campaigns and brand development. Saving Africa’s birds is going to take a determined effort from all of us.

The main aims and objectives of the WBT are to:

  • To advance the research in, education about and conservation of all birds in the wild as well as the related habitat.
  • Focus will be placed primarily on African species that act as ecosystem and biodiversity indicators although other species and geographical areas will be considered as well.
  • To work with all interested and involved parties including government, private sector, NGOs, education and research institutions, aviculture and bird-watching sectors without losing objectivity and independence.

In the pursuit of these aims and objectives the Wild Bird trust works closely with relevant local and international entities and persons, including: government authorities; educational institutions; conservation organizations; and avicultural organizations. The trust is funded entirely by its founder members, charitable donations and conservation grants.



See the Africa Birds & Birding Facebook page for amazing wild bird photos from Africa!