Fwd: [Raptor_conservation] photographers threaten endangered Hen Harrier

To: jenny spry <>
Subject: Fwd: [Raptor_conservation] photographers threaten endangered Hen Harriers in Holland
From: Carl Clifford <>
Date: Fri, 12 Nov 2010 12:15:16 +1100
Hi Jen,

I also was up at Bowra when the Restless F-c chicks hatched. I was
taking shots from the steps of the quarters, when one of the
photographers there said I should climb up the tree "so I could get a good shot". I replied that the birds were being disturbed too much
anyway. The photographer replied " what's the problem? The birds are
probably going to be eaten by something anyway" I walked away before
said photographer would have had to bend over to take any further
photographs. Shortly after that, signs were placed in the quarters
giving rules for photographing birds, but they seemed to make no
difference to the behaviour of certain individuals.

I find it rather bizarre that Camera clubs have a code of ethics for
the production of the images, but not for how the images were obtained.


Carl Clifford

On 12/11/2010, at 11:24 AM, jenny spry wrote:

Hi all,

I think some things have changed with the introduction of DSLR cameras and are being overlooked in this discussion. Without detracting from
the concern that "some bird watchers" threaten the security of their
target bird, the matter has become much wider.

For example, the photographers harassing the flycatchers at Bowra
earlier this year were not "birdwatchers", they were "photographers". All they wanted were top images of birds for entry into photographic

I met them there but left the day after they arrived so missed the
damage they supposedly did. I do know however that they were very
excited to have the opportunity to photograph "Leaden Flycatchers" at the nest. They knew they were "Leadens" and not Restless because one
"had rusty orange on the breast". They had checked their field guide
and I could not persuade them otherwise.

I ate my dinner with one of the photographers in the shearers shed and he was telling me all about his camera club and what the rules were
about the images eg no digital manipulation, the images had to be as
they were taken, hence the need for no branches obstructing the view
etc. Photoshopped images could not be used in their competitions. And some of the photos were exquisite, even if the bird was misnamed.

It is still the minority giving the rest a bad name but they are no
longer all "birdwatchers", "bird photgraphers" have now joined the
"birding" fraternity.



On Fri, Nov 12, 2010 at 10:25 AM, Carl Clifford
<> wrote:

If you read through the posts on Birding-Aus with an open mind, you
will find that the apparently anti-photographer postings are about a
minority who are giving the rest a bad name.

I have seen some utter bastardry carried out by photographers over the years. One incident in Malaysia I saw a photographer (a non-Malaysian) cutting away the vegetation obscuring the view of a Black-naped
Monarch on its nest. The poor bird was hysterical, but bravely stuck
to his nest. I have seen similar acts carried out here in Australia.

Well behaved photographers should, instead of protesting in high
dudgeon, should perhaps look at cleaning out those photographers who
are giving them a bad name rather than mounting broadsides at birders, otherwise the non-photographers will only start to think, to
paraphrase Shakespeare, " The photographers doth protest too much,
methinks" .

I also photograph birds, having spent some $15k over the last few
years. I don't stalk birds to photograph them though. I use camouflage and wait for them to come to me (and, no, I do not use calls or bait.

Carl Clifford

On 12/11/2010, at 1:16 AM, david taylor wrote:

Its seems to me that on a site like birding-aus there would now be
very many birders who photograph birds, and in my opinion barbs at
bird photographers as a group achieves very little. As in all things in life there will be isolated incidents of concern which we should all learn from, but personally i think that the contribution of
photographers ( whether am or pro)  over recent years has been
generally nothing short of amazing, and has presented wonderful images and information on birds and highlighted birds and birding in ways we could not have imagined just a few years ago.


David Taylor

On 11/11/2010, at 12:04 PM,  wrote:

"Both nests had been the focus of attention of
photographers, as visible from the trampling of vegetation"

Do you know something that was not in the text Carl?

It seems it is just not journalists that put 1 & 1 together to make
3 ;-).

However chances are we will marvel at some wonderful close-up footage by David Attenborough & his professional mates on a Sunday night in
the future.
"How do they get those shots?"
All the while maintaining the divisions; Twitcher good, Professional photographer good, Amateur photographer bad..

Chris Charles

On Thu Nov 11 8:09 , Carl Clifford sent:

Another case of bird photographers behaving badly.

Carl Clifford

Begin forwarded message:

From: Stanley Moore <>
Date: 11 November 2010 11:00:24 AM
Subject: [Raptor_conservation] photographers threaten endangered Hen
Harriers in Holland

Notes: photographers threaten endangered Hen Harriers in Holland

FN ISI Export Format
VR 1.0
AN ZOOR14611079940
DT Article
TI Disturbances at nests of hen harriers Circus cyaneus.
FT Nestverstoringen bij Blauwe Kiekendieven Circus cyaneus.
AU de Boer, Peter
SO Takkeling
VL 18
IS 2
PS 105-107
PY 2010
LA Dutch
ME Print
AB The Hen Harrier is a rare breeding bird in The Netherlands, nearing
its extinction rapidly. Only 19 pairs were recorded in 2009, of which
17 on the Wadden Sea Islands; this is just 15% of the numbers
registered in 1994. On the island of Terschelling, two nests were
disturbed in 2009. Both nests had been the focus of attention of
photographers, as visible from the trampling of vegetation and the
creation of clearly visible paths to the nest. One of these nests is
supposed to have been raided for commercial purposes (chicks
at the other nest one of the chicks was found nearby, deliberately
trampled to death. Both nests may have been easier to find by people
with bad intentions because of the behaviour of photographers. Codes
of conduct for photographers are now available from several
organisations, and disturbances are therefore unnecessary.
C1 de Boer, Peter; Keerweer 23, 6862 CD Oosterbeek, Netherlands
SN 1380-3735
BD Animals and man; Conservation; Techniques; Behavioural techniques;
Ecology; Population dynamics; Land zones; Palaearctic region;
DE Circus cyaneus [Disturbance by man / Nest destruction / ] [Endangered
status / / ] [Observation techniques / / ] [Population dynamics /
Local extinction / ] [Population size / Breeding population size / ]
[Netherlands / / ].
TN Birds; Chordates; Vertebrates
ST Animalia, Chordata, Vertebrata, Aves, Falconiformes, Accipitridae
OR Circus cyaneus (Accipitridae).
UT ZOOREC:ZOOR14611079940


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