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A-Z of Canterbury Birds

Gibson Albatross -
Diomedia Gibson, off the coast of the Kaikoura, 2009;
Carolyn Green.
Click to enlarge

Gibson Albatross - Diomedia Gibson, off the coast of the Kaikoura, 2009; Carolyn Green.

23 November 2009

A-Z of Canterbury Birds - a photographic ornithological odyssey

A group of Christchurch photographers have captured the characters of a wide selection of Canterbury’s ornithological citizens in an exhibition at Our City O-Tautahi.

A-Z of Canterbury Birds – a photographic ornithological odyssey brings together the work of seven local photographers. Their images delve into the lives of Canterbury’s birds, bringing the photographers’ delight of their subjects and their varied world to light.

From Albatrosses to Zosterops lateralis (Silvereye), Canterbury’s birds offer variety of size, plumage, colour and song. Some have arrived as permanent residents including the raucous Magpie and the aloof Harrier, and some, such as Godwits, are summer visitors. The exhibition also features stunning images of seabirds while images of swamp birds exemplify the cute to the comical.

Photographer Frank Green, who with wife Carolyn has coordinated the exhibition, said that photography offered unexpected ways of examining birds that might be taken for granted.

Kea - Nestor
notabilis - Lining up the next target:  (Frank
Click to enlarge

Kea - Nestor notabilis - Lining up the next target: "I may be over anthropomorphic but I really thought this typically curious and cheeky Kea was thinking something like, “which part of your car will I rip off now, or will I have a go at your camera?” (Frank Green)

“The process of respectfully observing and photographing birds in their habitat requires enormous patience, but they do repay observation. There is time to admire their plumage, to note how well their body shapes are adapted to their habitat, to learn about their feeding or their nurturing behaviour.

“We want to encourage people to look for themselves and appreciate them.”

Each photograph is accompanied by a personal insight of the photographer. Recurring themes include the challenges of photographing birds in their natural setting, and of the ways in which each photographer came to appreciate their subject.

A-Z of Canterbury Birds - a photographic ornithological odyssey opens Tuesday 24 November – Saturday 9 January 2009, Our City O-Tautahi, corner Oxford Terrace and Worcester Boulevard. Admission is free.


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