Acorn Woodpecker

I’ve been immersed in a couple of projects and haven’t had time to shoot anything (or visit here) for several weeks. One project was destroying a blackberry patch that was becoming overgrown, as the dead canes were a fire hazard. I didn’t like removing it because it was frequented by birds, but it had to go. So yesterday I put up a new feeder in a nearby tree and grabbed the camera to see if I could get a shot or two. This woodpecker stopped by for about a minute and gave me a decent pose in soft light.

Apologies for being behind in viewing and commenting – I should be back above water by next week.

Specific Feedback Requested

All comments welcome!

Technical Details

Is this a composite: No
Canon R5, 100-500 + 2X at 1000, f/14, ISO 1600, 1/500 sec, tripod. Minimal adjustments in LR thanks to soft light. Horizontal cropped from both sides to give about a 50% crop. Topaz NR done but hardly shows at this size. Very minor cloning of left side of perch and bill cleanup. Nik Detail Extractor to bring out a little more BG detail.


Diane, good to have you back. I really like this pose. The details in him are great. Nice lighting. It looks like your new feeder is paying off. To get a woodpecker to pose for you on that limb like this, he deserves a new feeder! That BG is nice too. Just an excellent portrait of him.

Woah, light to die for. Lickable for sure. The background shows off both bird and perch. We don’t have this species out this way so it’s a treat to see one. Hope you’re out of the weeds soon.

Diane, you scored a real hit here. Well done. I like the pose, the light, the background. Awesome!

Love the colour of the breast feathers - and everything else. The bird looks pensive. Definitely more fun than clearing blackberries! Beautiful shot.

Good to hear the birds still visit. Excellent shot: the subject is lovely and the perch and background work very well. Cheers, Hans

Hi Diane,

I have been busy as well and in time I should be able to contribute more than I have been able to do. The woodpecker is very nice and you were able to get some ideal lighting on the subject as well. I think your edits work well for this image and and the comp is very pleasing to the eye. Well done…Jim

@Shirley_Freeman, @Kris_Smith, @David_Bostock, @Hans_Overduin, @Jim_Zablotny and @Mike_Friel – thanks for commenting! The perch is far from ideal – I need to put one up next to one of the feeders as the odds of anyone landing on a good limb on this tree are not good. I got a decent but tight shot of a Scrub Jay that I may post, but here’s a more typical shot. :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes: But AF hit the eye right away and stayed on it as it looked around.

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Nice soft lighting Diane. The bird and perch are fine indeed - I wonder what it is looking at ? Theres the connection I suppose. Do you have a shot of it making connection with you ?

Thanks @Karl_Zuzarte – if it did look at me it was only for a split second – I only shot this one just out of amazement at how the AF hit the eye behind the branches. Not a keeper otherwise. It did an over-the-shoulder look and then another one flew through the frame from my right and this one took off after it. With my luck, the other one had probably been in a nice pose on a much better branch while I was looking at this one – like the Woodpecker above. This tree is a low percentage location.