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PIC OF THE WEEK: 06/24/13 • PREVIOUS WEEKNEXT WEEKALL 2013 PICS

Bird Pic Of The Week

Purple Martin

(Progne subis)

Where: Richmond, VA • Broad Street

Notes: Ever since seeing many thousands of these birds in their large migratory flocks at the Purple Martin roost in Richmond's Shockoe Bottom, I have been amazed at the agile flight of these birds. They are North America's largest member of the swallow family, at almost eight inches from head to tail. No doubt the additional size provides them the extra strength for such spectacular flight. The early morning light illuminated the iridescent purples and deep blues of the almost black plumage of this adult male as he blazed past. He had made several trips from the nearby Martin House to some Cherry Trees in the adjacent lot. The Martin would land on an high perch, pluck a tender green leaf from the canopy and then return to its nesting cavity. Their nest is a structure of primarily three levels. The first acts as a foundation and is usually made up of twigs, mud, and small pebbles. The second level of the nest is made up of grasses and finer smaller twigs, with the third level of the nest comprising of fresh green leaves. That is where the eggs are laid. I assume the leaf it was carrying was for this top layer. They typically lay three to six eggs and the female does most of the incubation, with some help from the male. They eat primarily flying insects and thus are migratory birds when the days turn cold. They fly to South America and back each year.

Small Bird Photo 1
female

Small Bird Photo 2

iPhotoBirds Print Purple Martin (PUMA-H-0407)

Archival quality fine art print, standard size for easy framing, hand signed by the artist, with white matte, backing board and clear protective cover. Image cropping may vary slightly depending on print size.
Print Size: 5" x 7" (with 8" x 10" Matte) . . . $20.00
Print Size: 8" x 10" (with 11" x 14" Matte) . . . $40.00
Print Size: 11" x 14" (with 16" x 20" Matte) . . . $75.00

Shipping and Handling is $5.95 TOTAL PER ORDER TOTAL (US Mail), no matter how many items purchased. Virginia State sales tax applies to in state shipping addresses.

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Equipment: Canon EOS 5D Mark III • Canon 400mm f-5.6 Prime USM L Series Lens • Gitzo 3531LS Tripod • Wimberly Head WH-1010 • Remote Wireless Shutter Release • Doghouse Blind • Hand Held • 1.4X Converter

Exposure: Shutter Speed = 1/2500 second • Aperture = f-7.1 • Exposure Mode = Aperture Priority • Focus Mode: AiServo • Lens (Focal) Length = 400 mm • ISO = 1600 • Aprox. Camera Distance = ~20 • Date Shot: 06-01-13

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