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In a residential neighborhood yesterday, I encountered a small kettle of black vultures feasting on a large doe (see comment area) on the lawn near the road.
They allowed me to approach and shoot at will for a few minutes, but then took flight. These two alighted on a nearby chimney to watch me.
I liked this shot (for its captioning possibilities) but the blue sky was blown out. So I had to swap one in--which was tricky because of the grating around the chimney, where sky showed through. That required me to use the Photoshop Vanishing Point filter VERY gingerly.

© Michelle Alton
Canon EOS 5D Mark ...
  Dinner for Seven
Dinner for Seven
Not for the feint of heart!
I've just read in a fantastic book about the work of vultures and other animal undertakers ("Life Everlasting"--by Bernd Heinrich) , that vultures are communal birds, making them potential EXCELLENT pets for humans!
If it weren't for the natural undertakers, the world would be if we can't be friends with a vulture, we should at least revere them.
The faces of black vultures are not red (like the Turkey Vultures'). I believe these are tinted by the deer's blood.

© Michelle Alton
Canon EOS 5D Mark ...
Michelle Alton
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member since: 5/3/2007
    The action below, just before the birds departed.

1/27/2013 4:11:06 AM

Jack Gaskin
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member since: 11/2/2007


Bravo on not being a SISSY on the Predation Capture.
My experience has been you can get to within about
30 feet of them before the spook. But they never go far when there's still food available.

You will HATE/LOVE my post tomorrow. Got LUCKY
Yesterday w/the Gators ;O)


1/27/2013 4:40:13 AM

Mary Beth Aiello
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Michelle -- this has WINNER written all over it. Simply an outstanding capture -- the poses, the detail, the expressions, the story. Just so unique. And Jack is right. This IS razor sharp. LOVE it.

1/27/2013 5:17:14 AM

Jeff W. Robinson
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Vultures are amazing - Great captures of them Michelle!

1/27/2013 5:47:21 AM

Jack Ryan
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A unique photo op and you took full advantage of it. Super clarity...well done.

1/27/2013 6:19:45 AM

Ken Smith
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Very cool shot...and those guys are a little scary. You can keep them as a pet. As for me, I'll stick with Jack's gator! :-)

1/27/2013 6:20:36 AM

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They look more like Grinches to me
Ready to steal Santas bounty

Excellent work Mickey
Razor sharp makes it Cut to the front of the line!!

1/27/2013 6:31:56 AM

Liz Bullock
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1/27/2013 7:24:48 AM

Connie J. Bagot
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Great shot of these guys---honestly they don't hurt anybody and they do us a huge favor re cleaning up carrion. Great work on the sky too!

1/27/2013 7:34:34 AM

Linda Karlin
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What a opportunity. Super shot.

1/27/2013 8:24:52 AM

Ann H. Belus
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Fantastic work, Michelle...this image is superb!

1/27/2013 11:26:21 AM

Thomas E. Hinds
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Great composition and detail in this amazing image, Michelle!

1/27/2013 5:48:39 PM

David Phalen
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Absolutely amazing!! The comp, clarity and DD work are superb!!

1/27/2013 6:02:34 PM

Carol L. Fowler
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Very sharp and vivid! Nice capture!

1/27/2013 6:43:27 PM

Robert K. Bemus
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Don't want to imagine the stink and disease we'd have without vultures...beautiful capture and editing, Michelle!!

1/27/2013 9:37:41 PM

Ann Coates
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What a brilliant capture Michelle. I hope we see this again.

1/27/2013 10:32:20 PM

Kirsten (Kiki) Kjaer
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It is the way of Nature...
Fabulous image, Michelle.

1/28/2013 3:17:33 AM

Kathy Reeves
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Wonderful image of natures clean up crew!

1/29/2013 4:51:37 AM

Emile Abbott
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Fabulous capture and DD work to swap the sky. They take care of the road kill on the West Texas Hiways.

1/29/2013 2:38:46 PM

Jeffrey R. Bange
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Outstanding capture Michelle with fantastic detail in the feathers, I'm sure we will be seeing this one again real soon.

1/29/2013 9:23:52 PM

Irene Colling
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Very catchy title Michelle.

Great presentation and expert sky replacement. Like you did, I often replace the sky to give an image more impact.

2/1/2013 11:05:05 AM

Linda A. Braddock
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Great Capture, Michelle!

2/8/2013 12:41:07 PM

Dianna Hauf
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That is so perfect!!!! LOVE the title and the clarity, composition and details is just spot on! chuckle....

3/2/2013 5:08:04 AM

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