Having patience is essential with bird photography, especially when you are in their environment. Last Sunday we decided to spend some time in a kea enclosure at Staglands Wildlife Reserve. Recently two new kea have joined the other birds in the walk through aviary. We thought it would be a good time to have look at the new birds, and hopefully get some good photos of them.
The problem was knowing how to tell the new birds from the three long term residents. Simple answer we can’t. So we don’t know if these images are of the new birds or not, as we only saw three kea in total, and we were told there were five now. Either they were taking turns to amuse us, or they had a very good hiding place within the aviary.
There was a good amount of preening happening in the aviary, which is always a good time to get some feather images. However we did sit and wait for quite some time before the birds were willing to show themselves. If we had just walked through the aviary we would have seen very little.
There is a pair of pāteke, or brown teal also resident in the kea aviary. Normally nocturnal birds, the pāteke pair decided to show off their bathing techniques to us as well. This involved dipping the beak in the water and then using it to preen themselves. Very precise and delicate work.