guard duty

This guy stood still for me while guarding the rest of the group as they ducked into the brush…quail-2765

quail-2766There are two kinds of teachers: the kind that fill you with so much quail shot that you can’t move, and the kind that just gives you a little prod behind and you jump to the skies.ย 
โ€•ย Robert Frost


39 thoughts on “guard duty

    • They are certainly well dressed! I think we’ve all had both sorts of teachers. With any luck, everyone should encounter one of the good ones somewhere in their life.


  1. Nice images! I’ve never had the opportunity to photograph a Quail. One thing I noticed, the bird’s eye isn’t in focus. Likely what happened is the auto-focus grabbed on to a blade of grass and stole the focus from the bird. I think out-of-the-box, the auto-focus will use all focus points and focus on the nearest object. You can change this in your camera to using one focus point. You can then toggle the focus point up-down and left-right. But the middle one is the best. Use that point to focus on the bird’s eye, keep holding the shutter half-way, re-frame if necessary, and take the shot. I apologize if you know all this already. Just wanted to pass on something I’ve learned.


    • Thanks, Beth, but shooting on the fly in auto, I can’t set the focus points. It was close to sunset so not nearly ideal conditions. I consider myself lucky to have got any of the bird in focus at all. ๐Ÿ˜‰


  2. A lovely guy he is! Do they call them Gambel’s quail in your neck of the woods? When we had a home in Sedona, I had these huge windows in my bedroom that looked out over Lee Mountain. I created a bird and butterfly garden just outside those windows and beyond that garden was a terraced back yard. I loved to watch the quail come to the bird feeders. They did this quick scratching dance in the ground to dig up the seeds dropped from the feeder above. More interesting was watching mom and dad teach their brood to fly from one terrace step to another. One parent would stand on the bottom terrace and the other on the top, calling encouragement to each little chick. It was so entertaining to watch. Thanks for the memory Gunta! ๐Ÿ™‚


    • Oh what fun to see them doing stairs! Though very similar to Gambel’s quails, our guys are actually California quail. Near as I could figure, the main difference is in the lighter patch of forehead.


    • I was lucky to have studied their habit of posting a lookout. I knew this guy was going to sit there until the rest of the bunch was safe. Unless I seriously threatened him, I suppose.


        • I didn’t know if you had them over on your side of the pond. The little ones running after mom or dad are so much fun to watch. They make me think of a tiny little choo-choo train, trailing along after the parent. I miss our bird feeder at the previous house where the quail would come out with their brood and pick up what the other birds had scattered on the ground.


    • They are so sweet. We used to have lots of them at our bird feeder back when I didn’t have the fancy DSLR. I’ve been wanting this opportunity and finally lucked out!


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