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Black Grouse Confrontation

By teocali
A pair of Black Grouse (Lyrurus tetrix) during the lekking season, taken at dawn near Aviemore, Scottish Highlands last Tuesday. Driving horizontal rain and gale force winds blowing head-on into the lens made this a challenging operation! The stormy rainclouds raced across the sky, breaking up to reveal short clear periods which produced interesting light and saturated colours. The most striking feature of this gamebird is the lyre-shaped tail, visible when displaying.

The all-black males have distinctive red wattle over the eye and show a striking white stripe along each wing in flight. They have a lyre-shaped tail which is fanned out and raised to show white under-tail feathers when displaying. The smaller grey-brown females have a slightly notched tail. Habitat loss and overgrazing have resulted in severe population declines which make this a Red List species. Positive habitat management is helping them to increase in some areas.
Found in upland areas of Wales, the Pennines and most of Scotland. Best looked for on farmland and moorland with nearby forestry or scattered trees. They have traditional 'lek' sites where the males display. Can be seen all year round. They feed on buds, shoots, catkins and berries.
Description taken from the RSPB website

Many thanks for your support of my last upload with a special thank you to Adrian(tomcat) for his User Award - really appreciated and valued Smile

Tags: Wild Bird Scottish highlands Game bird Aviemore Confrontation Wildlife and nature Black grouse Lekking Lyrurus tetrix Displaking Lyre-shaped tail

Voters: MalcolmM, Paintman, Lillian and 41 more

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Comments


Lillian Plus
7 21 17 United Kingdom
18 Apr 2013 7:12PM
You got them then Sylvia! brilliant shot showing the rain and the rain on the
grouse too, lovely timing and good action going on
Lillian

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colin beeley Plus
13 1.1k 10 England
18 Apr 2013 7:38PM
another nice shot Wink
18 Apr 2013 7:45PM
Stunning capture.
I like the aspect-ratio.
18 Apr 2013 8:35PM
Very well captured Sylvia, especially considering the weather conditions, great timing, captured the moment,
excellent nature photography.
David
18 Apr 2013 8:36PM
Excellent image Sylvia in obviously difficult conditions, excellent
Maurice
Maiwand Plus
9 3 72 England
18 Apr 2013 9:55PM
Glorious shot of the birds Sylvia..Every one of the shots in this series has been top quality. Well done indeed.GrinGrinGrin
Ron
Greyheron Plus
14 282 7 England
18 Apr 2013 10:09PM
Excellent camerawork under harsh conditions Sylvia - superb viewing...

Mike
gary_d Plus
8 576 13 Wales
18 Apr 2013 10:39PM
You did so well in difficult conditions but I would expect no less. - gary
Norfolkboy 10 1 4 England
18 Apr 2013 10:52PM
Another super capture, Sylvia.
Colin
CarolG Plus
9 195 18 Greece
19 Apr 2013 6:44AM
Superb Smile Carol
Ray42 8 3 England
19 Apr 2013 7:34AM
Brilliant
Kim Walton 12 145 30 United Kingdom
19 Apr 2013 2:35PM
Ahh ,should of looked back ....Wink
almiles 6 38 102 United Kingdom
19 Apr 2013 4:58PM
This turned out so well in the end Sylvia! The rain is just as good as it looked straight out of the camera and the shallow DoF really draws attention to the ongoing confrontation. The facing grouse looks cross! ISO 2000 is looking great for colour and noise from the 5d Mk III Smile
Glostopcat 10 255 2 England
19 Apr 2013 7:57PM
A terrific image of these two protaganists about to go head to head in combat. Your photograph and write up is truly superb, I never knew they could be found in Wales before

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