• Sharp-tailed Sandpiper

    Sharp-tailed Sandpiper.   Photographer: Sandy Castle

  • Whistling Kite

    Whistling Kite.   Photographer: Peter Bennet

  • Australian Pied Oystercatcher

    Australian Pied Oystercatcher.   Photographer: Richard Smart

  • Crested Tern

    Crested Tern.   Photographer: Andrew Browne

  • Eastern Rosella

    Eastern Rosella.   Photographer: Con Boekel

Winner: Australian Brush Turkey - Leonard Ezzy (Image #21440)

Lovely light sets off the beauty of this photograph. Colours are vibrant and clear. Focus is spot on showing all the fine hairs and the detail in the eye is lovely. The contours of the skin and beak are well- defined with beautiful detail. The depth of field is also spot on as the slightly out-of-focus neck concentrates the gaze onto the birds head nicely. Background is soft and even and compliments the bird beautifully. The stare captured is intense and the fine details around the eye and in the iris itself are wonderful. The composition is a portrait, but just enough room has been left around the bird to balance the composition beautifully. I cannot find any negatives in this wonderful frame. A truly lovely portrait, fully deserving the win.

Australian Brush Turkey - Leonard Ezzy

Highly Commended: Palm Cockatoo - Michael Schmid (Image #21444)

A beautiful, well-balanced image of a wonderful species. It shows all the hallmarks associated with this species in terms of beak, crest, cheek patch and tongue. The eye, cheek patch and beak are all nicely sharp. The blacks of the feathers are beautifully exposed to show all the fine details. It has a wonderful, crest-up pose so indicative of the species. A lovely soft pastel background compliments the bird nicely and there is some space on the right for the bird to “move into” making the composition very nice. I think a little more space around the bird would assist the composition. A close second.

Palm Cockatoo - Michael Schmid

Commended: Australian Pied Oystercatcher - Mark Davidson (Image #21321)

This lovely frame demonstrates how well the correct angle of taking the shot really assists the outcome. Having both birds in focus demonstrates nice depth of field choice. White and black birds are hard to expose well and as this frame demonstrates, proper exposure shows all the details in the blacks whilst not over-exposing the whites. The orange beaks assist the focal point of the image and contrast beautifully against the white and black of the birds and the background, which is soft and nicely blue due to the water. The light on the birds is very nice also. I would suggest a more open crop so the birds do not cramp the frame as much as they do and which would allow a bit more habitat context to come through in the overall composition.

Australian Pied Oystercatcher - Mark Davidson

Commended: Great Egret - Chris Dubar (Image #21501)

Always great to capture action and this image does this well. The fish in the beak and the splash and water droplet really tells the story. A nice pose captured and the exposure is very nice as it shows the details in the whites very well. The composition is nice and open and habitat is evident. I think a slightly lower angle would make this a great frame and it would also be assisted by some post processing to adjust the contrast slightly so it looked less dull and grey. A very nice frame and nice to see some action.

Great Egret - Chris Dubar

Commended: Great Egret - Chris Dubar (Image 21500)

A lovely image with fine reflection captured. This image really demonstrates what a little more compositional room around the bird does; there is no need for the bird to completely dominate and fill the entire frame and no detail is lost because of the more open crop. The angle chosen is perfect as it allows for the reflection to be included. The water background complements the bird nicely and also assists to demonstrate habitat. This is another image I think could really be assisted by some more precise post processing to adjust the contrast a little to make the bird more defined from the background.

Great Egret - Chris Dubar

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