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All photographs by David Lilly
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First, the photographs in this article are what I consider good photographs. Everyone has good bird photographs and have their own criteria for considering their photograph a good bird photograph.
Here are my criteria:
1. There must be some action in the photograph. For example, birds in flight.
2. It must be a difficult photograph.
3. A photograph I have been striving for a long time is the Hooded Merganser flapping its wings. I have always pictured a Hooded Merganser flapping its wings in my mind and finally, I was able to get the photograph.
4. Of course, it must be sharp.
5. The light must be good.
6. It must be something unusual. The Sharp-shinned Hawk on the bottom right was a rare photograph for me. It was the first time I was able to approach so close. He was bathing in a puddle of water on a small dirt road.
Every bird photographer has great bird photographs. Set your criteria, it may be different than my criteria. It will keep you motivated to get better bird photographs.