The Food Transfer
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From the time mum is on the eggs to the time when the juveniles fledge and are capable of hunting for themselves, it is dad’s job to hunt for the entire family. When dad returns to the nest site with food, he can pass the food on to mum or the juveniles in one of two ways: an aerial foodpass (done in mid-air) or a food transfer (done on the ground or on a branch). This series of images shows a food transfer between mum and dad on a branch. Read more!
Don’t Shoot the New Zealand Falcon!!!
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It’s sad to see that folk in New Zealand think it’s ok to shoot a highly threatened Bird of Prey out of the sky. A lot more work needs to be done here to protect these beautiful birds…     This article just in from the Department of Conservation just reiterates that this is still a very real and ever present problem in New Zealand: Let’s do our bit to ensure that the message goes out that it’s NOT OK to shoot these beautiful birds. As a predator at the top of its food chain, the NZ Falcon has every right to exist in the ecosystem as does any other predator around the world.   Read more!
A Mother’s Love
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The story behind this image… Back in 2016, the team at Wingspan, the National Bird of Prey Centre based in Rotorua, NZ, was told of a number of dive-bombing incidents along a popular and busy mountain biking and walking track in the Redwoods. Wingspan went out to investigate and found a pair of nesting Kārearea (NZ Falcon) (that came to be known as the pair at Nursery Road) with one female chick. Wingspan banded the chick and I photographed the pair and their chick extensively until the chick fledged. The image you see on the top is just one example of mother’s love and care in action – a brief moment when mum (on the right) feeds her juvenile daughter (on the left). Fast forward to 2017 and Wingspan was again given reports of divebombing but from a different area of Rotorua. Volunteers on site at the Hemo Gorge nest site managed to get a closeup image of mum’s leg and from the band on her leg we were able to identify mum as the juvenile of the Nursery Road pair (the very same juvenile that you see in the top image). Now a mum herself of two healthy chicks, […] Read more!
2018 Wingspan Calendar
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Hello Fellow Gallopers, For the fourth year in a row, Black Stallion Photography and Wingspan National Bird of Prey Centre have teamed up to launch the Wingspan Calendar.     The 2018 Wingspan Calendar ​showcases ​four ​of New Zealand’s most treasured Birds of Prey – the Kārearea (New Zealand Falcon), the Kāhu (Australasian Harrier), ​the Ruru (the New Zealand Morepork Owl) and New Zealand’s newest native species – the Barn Owl​. ​ The birds showcased in the 2018 calendar are all resident at the Centre and the calendar documents their individual stories. Through their stories, people will get a much deeper and clearer understanding of what Wingspan does as an organisation in the area of Birds of Prey Conservation.     ORDERS FOR THE 2018 WINGSPAN CALENDAR CAN BE PLACED BY CLICKING HERE Alternatively, you can purchase them from the Wingspan National Bird of Prey Centre, 1164 Paradise Valley Road, Rotorua, New Zealand.   Till next time, take care and gallop free. Read more!
2017 Wingspan 25th Anniversary Calendar
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Hello Fellow Gallopers, Black Stallion Photography and Wingspan National Bird of Prey Centre are happy to announce the launch of the 2017 Wingspan 25th Anniversary Calendar.     From an idea incubated in the 1980’s, Wingspan Charitable Trust emerged from the egg in 1992. Twenty five years on, Wingspan has fledged, taken its first flight and is now recognised as New Zealand’s leading conservation, education and research organisation of Birds of Prey. This 25th Anniversary Calendar showcases the life journey of three of New Zealand’s most treasured Birds of Prey – the Kārearea (New Zealand Falcon), the Kāhu (Australasian Harrier) and the Ruru (the New Zealand Morepork Owl). Wingspan, by supporting healthy Bird of Prey populations, promotes a healthy and sustainable New Zealand.   ORDERS FOR THIS SPECIAL EDITION WINGSPAN CALENDAR CAN BE PLACED BY CLICKING HERE Alternatively, you can purchase a calendar from the Wingspan National Bird of Prey Centre or from Portico Gallery.   Till next time, take care and gallop free. Read more!
Artwork Raffle – Wingspan
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Hello Fellow Gallopers, Black Stallion Photography teamed up with Wingspan, the National Bird of Prey Centre of New Zealand, to raise much needed funds for the conservation work they do with New Zealand’s Birds of Prey. “Te Huatahi – On the Wing” is a digital print on Hahnemühle art paper, mounted with conservation grade acid-free matt boards and TruVue conservation glass and is a Single Edition signed print which will not be reproduced. This artwork celebrates the “On the Wing” project – the first city release of a threatened species in New Zealand. Te Huatahi, a male New Zealand falcon, made conservation history upon his arrival. Te Huatahi was successfully hatched and raised by Hatupatu, a male New Zealand falcon, released in 2013 and Maia, a female New Zealand falcon released in 2014. Valued at NZ$1,000, this print was raffled by Wingspan and on 30th August, 2016 the winning ticket was picked. Congratulations to Kath McIndoe who had the winning ticket – 121. Thank You to everyone who purchased a raffle ticket. By doing so, you’ve helped raise valuable funds to protect the endangered New Zealand Falcon… Till next time, take care and gallop free. Read more!
The Black Series
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Hello Fellow Gallopers, The Black Series is a set of images that I photographed at Wingspan – the National Bird of Prey Centre in New Zealand. The series showcases the Kārearea (New Zealand Falcon) and the Kāhu (Australasian Harrier) in flight. The black background in all the images in this series has NOT been photoshopped into the image. This is how the images were taken in-camera using a technique whereby low key images are taken using natural light. Enjoy!!! Till next time, take care and gallop free. Read more!
Pied Stilts in Love
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Hello Fellow Gallopers, As a Wildlife Photographer, it is a very satisfying feeling when one is able to capture a facet of a species life, in its entirety, on camera. All the more, when that facet of life is a really intimate one. I was blessed to have had the opportunity to photograph the below sequence of images showing a pair of Pied Stilts mating. These images were captured in Rotorua, New Zealand. Enjoy!!! Till next time, take care and Gallop Free. Read more!
2016 Wingspan Calendar
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Hello Fellow Gallopers, In 2014, in association with Wingspan National Bird of Prey Centre, a 2015 Calendar was produced showcasing the Birds of Prey that Wingspan has at its Centre and it showcased the four main species of birds of prey found in New Zealand (the Kārearea – New Zealand Falcon, the Kāhu – Australasian Harrier, the Morepork or Ruru (New Zealand Owl) and New Zealand’s newest native species – the Barn Owl). Profits from the sale of the calendars went directly to Wingspan. Close to 800 2015 calendars were sold raising a sum of close to $5,000 for Wingspan. Last year, again in association with Wingspan, a 2016 Calendar was produced. The 2016 Calendar showcases the falcons that have been released, over the past two years, from Rotorua Museum as part of the ‘On The Wing’ program – an on-going joint project between Wingspan and Rotorua Museum that involves the very first urban release, in New Zealand, of a threatened and endangered species. All profits from the sale of the calendar went directly to Wingspan.     About the ‘On The Wing’ project: On the Wing 2013 – 2016 Now in the third consecutive year, the ‘On the Wing’ […] Read more!