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Top 25 Wild Waterbirds

Wild Bird Trust presents the Top 25 Wild Waterbirds. Waterbirds can be particularly rewarding to photograph as waterbodies like wetlands and estuaries attract so many different species. In the past wetlands and marshes were often seen as wastelands that should be drained or transformed, but now we are recognising the value of these areas to...

Wild Bird Trust presents the Top 25 Wild Waterbirds. Waterbirds can be particularly rewarding to photograph as waterbodies like wetlands and estuaries attract so many different species. In the past wetlands and marshes were often seen as wastelands that should be drained or transformed, but now we are recognising the value of these areas to birds and other wildlife. Wetlands not only support wildlife but also function as the ‘kidneys’ of our ecosystems, filtering and cleaning water that comes into them. They also protect humans by buffering floods and stabilising shorelines. Unfortunately our oceans, rivers, wetlands and estuaries are under threat from pollutants like pesticides and plastics as well as disturbance from humans. The good news is we can all play a part in protecting our waterways. We can pick up litter, reduce our plastic consumption and ensure that we discard of chemicals in a responsible way. If we all make these small changes, the positive impact on our waterways could be immense!

If you would like to submit photographs for our Top 25 contest next week, keep a eye on the Facebook page, the next theme will be announced on Sunday. Then you can simply submit your photograph to the Facebook page with species, location and photographer as the caption, good luck!

The African Jacana has a polyandrous breeding system, where females mate with multiple males and the males care for the young (Edwin Godinho)
The Great Cormorant is the most widespread cormorant species, they are found from the arctic regions to the tropics (Soumitra Ghosh)
The American Dipper lives along fast flowing mountain streams, here they prey upon aquatic invertebrates and small fish (Melissa Penta)
A stunning habitat shot of Northern Pintails in Odisha, India (Subhamoy Das)
this Baillon’s Crake and its perfectly captured reflection was photographed in Rajarhat, India (Shayan Bose)
The Black-legged Kittiwake is one of the most abundant gulls in the North Atlantic. However their population is decreasing due to climate change. as sea temperatures rise, their zooplankton prey are affected which in turn reduces the gulls breeding success (Judi Fenson)
Crab Plovers catch crabs by stabbing them with their bills open (Vishwas Thakker)
Two Double-crested Cormorants with fish prey in San Fernando Valley, California (Leslie Reagan)
The Eurasian Spoonbill breeds in central Eurasia and over-winters in southern Asia and northern Africa. there is also a resident population in India, like this one at the Dighal Wetlands (Vishesh Kamboj)
Ferruginous Ducks are Near-threatened because their habitats are being polluted and disturbed by humans (Amit Kumar Srivastava)
The Glossy Ibis uses shallow lakes and lagoons but they are also partial to ricefields, ricefields have allowed the population to expand their range in the Mediterranean (Kuntal Das)
A trio of Great Cormorants in Bhavnagar, India (Unmesh Jadav)
Greylag Geese form long term monogamous bonds, one pair was recorded together for 17 years! (Gaurav Budhiraja)
The Large-billed Tern of South America makes use of freshwater rivers and lakes (Sharon Templin)
A group of Lesser Flamingoes feeding in Surat, India. One of the main characteristics that distinguishes the Lesser from the Greater Flamingo is the colour of the bill, the Lesser Flamingoes have a much darker bill (Mukesh Mishra)
The Mandarin Duck is native to eastern Asia but they have been introduced and have established multiple feral populations, including this one in California (Sandeep Nagaraja)
Two Mute Swans on the Frozen over Staring Lake, USA (Deepak Sharma)
Ringing records show that Northern Pintails can live up to 15 years (Asutosh Pal)
Ruddy Turnstones experience two extremes every year. They breed in the sub-Arctic regions and then migrate to much warmer coastlines like Australia and Africa (Ashvij Putta)
The name ruff, comes from the elaborate breeding plumage of the males which resemble the ruffs that were worn in the 17th century. This ruff is out of breeding plumage, quite drab in comparison (Asutosh Pal)
A Mute Swan takes flight in France (Christian Bagnol)
A Terek Sandpiper photographed on the coast of Perth, Australia (Ashvij Putta)
When Ruddy Shelducks breed, the young of different broods will frequently join together, perhaps to keep safe? (Sayan Biswas Maitra)
A Western Grebe photographed in Fremont, California (Sutapa Karmakar)
Wood Sandpipers are monogamous but care of the young is primarily by the male (Kuntal Das)


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


Wild Birds with a Splash of Colour

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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.