Acorn Fuss

Critique Style Requested: Standard

The photographer is looking for generalized feedback about the aesthetic and technical qualities of their image.


I got this dramatic moment while out in the backyard shooting birds. I don’t speak woodpecker but I think this had something to do with who owned the suet block.

Specific Feedback

I realize this is a tight composition but they were fairly close to me. I enjoyed the chaos of the moment, and their expressions. Fortunately, these spats never amount to anything serious. Should I have gone to the trouble of selecting, and lightening the tree bark under that lower area to further describe their feathers? Is that blue bokeh ball behind the head too distracting? I’ve already dodged the mid tones of their black feathers to pop some detail. I’m thinking this is one of those captures that’s worthy for the “story” and not the ideal quality…

Technical Details

Z9, Nikon 200-500 lens, 1/2500th, f 8.0, 630mm, ISO 7200, Photo AI, cropped to 3364 x 2502


Nice shot of these two quarreling, Dave. I wouldn’t worry about the tree bark or the blue ball, neither bothers me. If I were to do anything to this image, it would be to burn down the sunlit end of the suet cake between the heads of the birds and maybe dodge the faces of the birds just a trifle to accent them more.

Great capture, Dave. The expression in their eyes is so engaging I hardly noticed the rest of the scene. Great shot!

Thanks. Nifty little drama, huh

Great behavior, and techs looks fine to me. Several years ago I watched a nest hole and was fortunate enough to be there and ready when three babies emerged. The first one had moved away but when the third emerged, right after the second, the second one immediately started attacking it, viciously. I was stunned by the violence. I had been watching them for over a week as they poked their heads out of the hole, one by one – I hadn’t even realized there was more than one as they had apparently been taking turns and there had been no sign of any sort of competition.