Saffron Toucanet

An iconic tropical bird

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When my wife and I go on trips to the neotropics to photograph birds, one of my shortcomings is that I do not study the birds of that area very extensively beforehand. I rely on local guides to help me ID birds once I am on location. Unfortunately many of these local people are more accustomed to “bird watchers” than photographers. Simply seeing a bird 100 meters away through the trees is not very satisfying to me, so I have to emphasize to the guide what I want. Generally from that point on, both of us are happier. I also emphasize that I would prefer to shoot a good photograph of a common bird that a poor photo of a rare bird. I am happy shooting anything. That is why I come back from exotic trips with many photos of sparrows or other “common” birds.
However, I will admit that there are certain birds that I would be disappointed if I did not get the opportunity to photograph in a given local. This is one of those birds. This is a Saffron Toucanet. Not a rare bird in the Atlantic Rainforest of Brazil, but sometimes hard to photograph as they travel widely in their territory. I was happy to have the opportunity to photograph them last summer.
Shot with a Canon R5, 600 mm f/4.0, SS 1/1600, f/5.6 (these are long birds-I needed some DOF), ISO 320. Cropped slightly from L and bottom. I could not get the cut branches on the lower right out of my frame without making the crop less pleasing. Processed in PS with bird brought up slightly.

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What an incredible looking fellow!


Love the bird and photo. Thanks.