Marvin Smith of Valdosta, Georgia, took this portrait of a shimmering male Rufous Hummingbird on March 18, 2014, and posted it to our Backyard Gallery. He shot the photo through an open window at the home of his friend Karen Seward, who tends a hummingbird-friendly garden in her backyard.
The male Rufous and two adult females spent this past winter in Seward’s yard. As spring approached, she watched as the male developed its gorget feathers.
“We were afraid that it would depart any day, and I finally found an afternoon to try for a photograph,” Smith says. “The bird was perched outside her office window on a red plastic feeder (hence the reddish cast to the breast). I asked Karen to open the window, and I set up my camera on a tripod and waited. This was the best photo of many that I shot that afternoon.”
And it was just in time: Three days later, the bird was gone.
Smith used a Canon 7D, a 300mm lens, and a 1.4x converter without a flash.
Read more about hummingbirds
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