I was thrilled to capture some photos of a beautiful Scissor-tailed Flycatcher during a recent trip to the Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge in Oklahoma. As a wildlife photographer, I’m always looking to get shots of interesting birds in their natural habitats. The Scissor-tail is a stunning bird found in the southern Great Plains, known for its incredibly long, forked tail.
I spotted this flycatcher perched on a weed near the auto tour road through the refuge. One of the challenges of photographing these birds is getting close enough for great shots without disturbing them. I took an approach of slowly driving up nearer to the bird, stopping to take some quick photos, and then easing forward again.
The Scissor-tail continued singing, apparently unbothered by my presence. I was able to get within about 30 feet as it vocalized its brisk, twittering song. Its melody changes throughout the breeding season, but this one was singing what sounded like a mix of lower whistles and higher-pitched notes.
I captured some beautiful images of the flycatcher in its natural habitat, showing off its graceful forms and subtle reddish-pink shading. It was a thrill to document this special species up close. The Scissor-tail’s song will stick with me as a reminder of the natural wonders Oklahoma’s wildlife refuges have to offer. Being able to observe and photograph one of these unique songbirds in its natural environment was an unforgettable experience.
- Camera: Canon EOS R5
- Lens: Canon EF 800 mm f/11
- Location: Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge (Oklahoma)
- Date and Time Taken: July 24, 2021 (8:23 A.M.)
- Exposure Mode: Manual
- Aperture: f11 (Fixed)
- Shutter speed: 1/2000
- ISO: 1600 (Auto)
- Exposure Compensation: 0
- Focal Length: 800 mm