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Top 25 Wild Bird Photographs of the Week #37

Contingas, pardalotes, whydahs, eremomelas, camaroptera and cutias… Taxonomists are not good at coming up with easy-to-remember bird names. This is especially true for the rarest, remotest and often most beautiful birds whose ancestors were not named by local English-speaking peoples. As a result most of the over 10,000 bird species on earth have difficult unpronounceable names....

Contingas, pardalotes, whydahs, eremomelas, camaroptera and cutias… Taxonomists are not good at coming up with easy-to-remember bird names. This is especially true for the rarest, remotest and often most beautiful birds whose ancestors were not named by local English-speaking peoples. As a result most of the over 10,000 bird species on earth have difficult unpronounceable names. The necessity to label, memorize and identify has made “birding” too tiresome for most people. This collection of wild bird photographs demonstrates that the only words we need when observing free-living birds in the wild are “wow”, “that’s amazing”, “ahhhh”, and “that was the most beautiful thing I ever saw…”. Go out today and spend soem time with birds in the wild and become part of the “Wild Bird Revolution”!

Join the Wild Bird Revolution today!! Be the first to introduce your friends, family and colleagues to the freedom and splendor of birds in the wild! Advances in digital photography have given us the opportunity to capture the beauty and freedom of birds in the wild like never before. Here are the “Top 25 Wild Bird Photographs of the Week” drawn from the thousands of photographs submitted to the Wild Bird Trust for consideration every week. 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…

REGISTER NOW for a chance to WIN a pair of Swarovski binoculars. The vibrant colors, fine feathers, and sparkling eyes are all crystal clear through these amazing binoculars….


Spangel contingas are little-known birds found in the canopy of the Amazon Rainforests in South America. (Chow Yew Wah)
Anja Denker
Rosy-faced lovebirds are native to arid regions in SW Africa (e.g. Namib Desert), where they feed on grass seeds and nest in cavities made by other birds. They have managed to establish a feral population in Arizona (USA). (Anja Denker)
Kyle De Nobrega
Orange-breasted sunbirds are endemic to the fynbos habitat of SW South Africa and can be seen easily in parks and gardens with flowers. (Kyle De Nobrega)
Swethadri D
Coppersmith barbets are found in the Indian Subcontinent and parts of SE Asia, preferring nesting habitat with large trees capable of providing nest cavities. (Swethadri D)
Lennart Hessel /
European herring gulls are one of the best known of all gulls along the shores of W Europe and was once abundant. They breed across N, W and E Europe, Scandinavia, and the Baltic states. (Lennart Hessel /
Dana Allen /
African grey parrots are among the most populous pets on earth with millions upon millions removed from the wild to supply “bird mills” that breed these parrots for the pet trade. They are a spectacle to see flying free in the wild! (Dana Allen /
Lee Daniels
Anna’s hummingbirds are native to the W coast of North America and are named after Anna Masséna, the Duchess of Rivoli. (Lee Daniels)
Joshua McCullough
Bohemian waxwings travel in large, nomadic flocks with strong, direct flight pattern and breed in the coniferous forests throughout most N parts of Europe, Asia and W North America. Photographed here in Ontario (Canada). (Joshua McCullough)
Jineesh Mallishery
Brahminy starlings are usually seen in pairs or small flocks in open habitats on the plains of the Indian Subcontinent. (Jineesh Mallishery)
Juan López Ruiz
Cuban trogons or “Tocororo” are endemic to the Caribbean island of Cuba, where it is also their national bird. They prefer dry forests, moist forests, and heavily-degraded former forest. (Juan López Ruiz)
Jonathan Rossouw
Spotted pardalotes are one of the smallest of all Australian birds at 8 to 10 cm in length, and one of the most colourful… It is sometimes known as the “Diamondbird”. (Jonathan Rossouw)
Gururaj Moorching
Nicobar pigeons are found on small islands and coastal regions from the Nicobar Islands, E through the Malay Archipelago, all the way to the Solomons and Palau Islands. It is the only living member of the genus Caloenas. (Gururaj Moorching)
Kyle De Nobrega
Cape grassbirds breed in South Africa, Lesotho, Mozambique and Swaziland (with an isolated population in E Zimbabwe), preferring coastal and mountain fynbos and long, rank grass on mountain slopes or in river valleys. (Kyle De Nobrega)
Brendon Cremer
Juvenile African fish eagle catching a small tigerfish on the Chobe River near Kasane (Botswana). (Brendon Cremer)
Lennart Hessel
Mute swans are native to Europe and Asia with rare winter visitors in the far north of Africa. They are also an introduced species in North America, Australasia and S Africa. Photographed here in Gothenburg (Sweden). (Lennart Hessel)
Raj Sarkar
Asian openbills are found in the Indian Subcontinent and SE Asia. Young storks do not have the gap which is thought to be an adaptation that aids in the handling of snails. Photographed here in the Kulik Bird Sanctuary (India). (Raj Sarkar)
Rodnick Clifton Biljon
Cape parrots are Africa’s most endanered parrot due to the historical logging of most of the large hardwoods in South Africa over the last 350 years. (Rodnick Clifton Biljon)


Please watch this recent video insert on the Wild Bird Trust’s Cape Parrot Project…


Santhosh Gujar
Greater racket-tailed drongos are the largest of the drongo species and are readily identifiable by the distinctive tail rackets and the crest of curled feather that begins in front of the face. They extend from the W to E Himalayas. (Santhosh Gujar)
Rodnick Clifton Biljon
Southern red bishops are common in wetlands and grassland of Africa S of the Equator. They are, however, largely absent from the Namib Desert and Kalahari. (Rodnick Clifton Biljon)
Subramanya Madhyastha
Hoopoes are colourful bird that are found across Afro-Eurasia and most notably have a distinctive ‘crown’ of feathers that they can erect. They are the only extant species in the family Upupidae. (Subramanya Madhyastha)
Suranjan Mukherjee
Atlantic puffins are the provincial birds for the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador. They breed on the coasts of N Europe, the Faroe Islands, Iceland and E North America. The winter months are spent at sea far from land… (Suranjan Mukherjee)
Valentine Fernandez
Indian pond herons or “Paddybirds” have Old World origins and breed in S Iran and E to India, Burma, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. (Valentine Fernandez)
Jay van Rensburg
Pin-tailed whydahs are brood parasites that are found in most of Africa S of the Sahara Desert and prefer open habitats like open woodland, scrub and cultivation. (Jay van Rensburg)
Paul Ellis /
Himalyan cutias are found in the Himalayas from India to N Thailand, where they prefer tropical to subtropical humid montane forests. (Paul Ellis /
Nina Stavlund
Ospreys are found on all continents except Antarctica. They have strikingly binocular eyes designed to spot fish on the surface before capture. Photographed here in Canada. (Nina Stavlund)


logo-vectorPlease join the Wild Bird Trust page on Facebook or follow us on Twitter to receive all wild bird photo updates and news from our research and conservation projects in the field. Submit your own photos and become part of this important public awareness campaign to bring the magic of wild birds to the world. Prepare to be blown away every week… 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.

See last week “Top 25 Wild Bird Photographs of the Week #36″: 

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Meet the Author

Steve Boyes
Steve Boyes has dedicated his life to conserving Africa's wilderness areas and the species that depend upon them. After having worked as a camp manager and wilderness guide in the Okavango Delta and doing his PhD field work on the little-known Meyer's Parrot, Steve took up a position as a Centre of Excellence Postdoctoral Fellow at the Percy FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology. He has since been appointed the Scientific Director of the Wild Bird Trust and is a 2014 TED Fellow. His work takes him all over Africa, but his day-to-day activities are committed to South Africa's endemic and Critically Endangered Cape Parrot (Poicephalus robustus). Based in Hogsback Village in the Eastern Cape (South Africa), Steve runs the Cape Parrot Project, which aims to stimulate positive change for the species through high-quality research and community-based conservation action. When not in Hogsback, Steve can be found in the Okavango Delta where he explores remote areas of this wetland wilderness on "mokoros" or dug-out canoes to study endangered bird species in areas that are otherwise inaccessible. Steve is a 2013 National Geographic Emerging Explorer for his work in the Okavango Delta and on the Cape Parrot Project.