Smile! The world is a beautiful place (^_^)



Anthrax anthrax, is a species of fly in the family Bombyliidae. It’s a fairly large fly, the body length is 10 mm. The body is black with four white markings at tergum 2 and 3 and two white markings at the end of the abdomen. Tergum 1 is black with tufts of white hairs at the side (visible when hovering, thus not in this picture). The wings are mostly black, only the tops are transparant, and the veins are dark brown. It kind of looks like the wings have been painted with watercolour, I think the pattern is quite nice.:)



A peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus), photographed from my office window today. Not the best quality, it was quite far away and even though it’s one of the largest falcons, it was a tall order even for my trusty SX60. I think it’s a female, she was about the same size as a raven, males are smaller roughly the size of a crow.

The peregrine falcon is the fastest animal on Earth and in 2005 one was recorded stooping at a top speed of 389 km/h (242 mph). Impressive!



The Black swan (Cygnus atratus) is native to Australia but popular in zoological gardens all around the world. I spotted this one swimming around with ~20 Mute swans outside Amsterdam, it must have escaped from somewhere.



A male Great spotted woodpecker (Dendrocopos major) enjoying a cooling bath






A female Whinchat (Saxicola rubetra), swaying back and forth in the wind.. Captured with a shutter speed of 1/1000 s.



Four birds and one rabbit :)

(1) Willow warbler (Phylloscopus trochilus)


(2) Another Willow warbler (Phylloscopus trochilus)


(3) A female House sparrow (Passer domesticus) finding ornaments for the nest


(4) Starling (Sturnus vulgaris) finding ornaments for the nest


(5) Lots of cute rabbits around here in Amsterdam ❤



It’s a lovely, sunny Spring day here in Amsterdam today. Here are a 3 bird pictures I took this morning-

(1) Great tit (Parus major)


(2) Bearded reedling (Panurus biarmicus)

This was a first for me! It’s been on my wish list since I first saw it in a bird book. Unfortunately the photo isn’t very sharp, it’s difficult to get close to these wetland specialists..


(3) Dunnock (Prunella modularis)



Wishing you all a Happy Easter!

May your Easter basket be full of hope, health, joy, happiness and peace.


“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”

-Martin Luther King, Jr.


He’s back! It’s been 2.5 years since I last saw this male Mandarin duck (Aix galericulata), so I was delighted to spot him again yesterday.:)





I’ve been given a free trail version of Topaz DeNoise, a software to reduce noise in images without the need of a host editor like e.g. Photoshop. I’ve never used it before, nor have I any experience with other noise reducing software, however it’s pretty intuitive and easy to use. I’m sure the result could’ve been better with more practice and effort, but I’d like to share the first (and only) image I’ve edited so far.

The image shows a female Blackbird (Turdus merula), shot from a distance of roughly 15 meters at an ISO of 1000. I chose this picture for the experiment because half of the bird is in shadow and the other in bright light. Comparing the pictures below, you can see that the noise hasn’t been eliminated from the top image but it’s less obvious. The downside is of course that noise reduction cost some detail in the image, but I do think the edited version is more pleasant to look at.

What do you think? I’m interested in hearing your opinion and experience with noise reducing software!

(1) Edited version (no other software than DeNoise has been used):


(2) Straight out of the camera version:




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