If you visit Texel as an animal or nature photographer, one of the highlights is definitely to shoot a bluethroat. I have done this several times and I had trips years ago where I did nothing else for days but dedicate myself to these birds.
And yet it was only this time, on my 12th Texel trip, that I managed to create a good series of them. However, it was completely unexpected.
During the first 2-3 days I checked out the spots I know, which proved to be suitable in the past. I noticed that this time (unusual for June) there were a lot of "singing" bluethroats. That's nice to look at, but it doesn't mean that you can also take good photos.
Mostly they sit down on the higher plants or bushes, like the sea buckthorn, and for the filigree bird, the leaves of this plant are quite dominant around June and often outshine on the upper side of the leaves because of the reflections, as I noticed. I was able to shoot them quite close, but I had given up on the 3rd morning and told myself "you should better try without leaves next April".
Almost a whole week later something unusual happened. In the very north of the island, not even at the well-known bluethroat spots, but in a very small area in front of the dunes, I drove along in the morning by car. Actually I was looking for little rabbits, which I wanted to photograph from the car. At one point I stopped and heard a bluethroat (it is quite important in bird photography to recognize them by their voice).
I looked in that direction and there it was, about 60m away. Well I thought to myself, you know the game, as soon as you get out it will be gone. But then it just started. After setting up my tripod and camera it still sang. So I approached slowly, about 35m and took some "safety shots". Ok, they are in the box , let`s go on. 25m, fits. 15m, 10m and then it got interesting. This bluethroat had been singing on a branch for minutes and I was able to adjust the distance to about 7m and it seemed unimpressed. I did not want to go below 7m and it was also not necessary with my setup (840mm), you still want to have a certain image composition.
At some point it flew into the bushes, only to sit in front of me again 2 minutes later. That went for 3 hours (!!!) like this. The little bird had a radius of action of perhaps 30 meters this morning. To make it clear, that went also still in 3 of my last 5 vacation days so. But only in the morning (unfortunately it did not show up in the evening against the light) and the other times for 1-2 hours.
Despite the closeness, it was not easy to create harmonic pictures. Who knows me, knows that I don't like extreme closeups, as you can easily see from my blog series. But the bluethroats often sit on small branches with a lot inharmonic elements.
That's why I had to "work hard" about 6 hours in total to create a whole series. Fortunately the sky was diffuse/lightly overcast, the light would have been too strong otherwise.
I hope that there is something for you in the fourth part of my series.
Thank you very much for watching this series and many greetings,