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1. Citril Wagtail (Motacilla citreola werae)

Citril Wagtail (Motacilla citreola werae)

Murat Faik Özçelik


2. (Eurasian) Siskin-Carduelis spinus

(Eurasian) Siskin-Carduelis spinus

Taken in a very cold day in Altınpark, Ankara. Birds were heartily feeding, whiile bird photographers were joking each others. Murat Faik Özçelik


3. Eastern (Turkestan) Black-headed Wagtail (Motacilla flava melanogrisea)

Eastern (Turkestan) Black-headed Wagtail (Motacilla flava melanogrisea)

Murat Faik Özçelik


4. Eye-browed Black-headed (Yellow) Wagtail (Motacilla flava superciliaris)

Eye-browed Black-headed (Yellow) Wagtail (Motacilla flava superciliaris)

This a rare variant of Black-headed Wagtail (M. f. feldegg), sometimes considered as a seperate subspecies. Also some considers as M. f. feldegg X M. f. thunbergi (etc.) intergrade or hybrid. A similar form is named M. f. dombrowskii which has a lighter, greyer capouchon with similar eye-browes. Murat Faik Özçelik


5. Yellow-vented (Spectacled) Bulbul-Pycnonotus xanthopygos

Yellow-vented (Spectacled) Bulbul-Pycnonotus xanthopygos

I have been watching these birds at least for 10 years. Autumn is the favored season for watching these birds. In this season you can see adult, sub-adult, immature and juvenile birds all together. Although there is a subspecies described in Hayfa (Israel) and called P. x. vallombrosae (Bonaparte, 1856), this species is nowadays considered as monotipic, since the Israel birds seem same when compared as series (at the same plumage level) to the Turkish birds. I uploaded this footage for people to compare same species filmed in Israel. Murat Faik Özçelik


6. Hacıkadı(n)-Gerze Chickens February 2016

Hacıkadı(n)-Gerze Chickens February 2016

Here are my 2015 flock of the Hacıkadı(n)-Gerze chicken breed. I am continuing to improve ancient genetic characteristics of these chickens. In terms of body form and feather structure my chickens are close to original. But in terms of earlobe color and comb shape-quality I still need to work for few more years. Because for instance the earlobe color shows partial dominant character and getting homozygous white earlobe can be possible gradually in time. White skin, white fat and pinkish flesh are the characteristics that I have already achieved. Murat Faik Özçelik


7. Balkan Lilac and Slate Turkeys

Balkan Lilac and Slate Turkeys

Turkey genetics are quite complex and confusing. English naming for turkeys are also not standardized. Sometimes you can find two birds in different phenotype and/or genotype given the same name. I read tens of forum treats and turkey literature and decide to use lilac and slate words in naming my turkeys. One of the main resource for turkey types is porterturkeys(.com). As he mentioned, slate turkeys in US and Europe have different genetic structure. In Eastern Europe, slate turkeys have tan bands in their tails. But American slates have not. In addition to this, there are recessive slate gene in some European slate turkeys. My slates have one dominant slate gene over two bronze genes. Also my lilacs have two dominant slate genes together with two bronze genes. There are no red gene in these Balkan turkeys. These turkeys are bigger than American cousins. For example the tom in the second part of the video, is standing next to a chicken feeder which contains 25 kg chicken feed. The used tires belong to a Mitsubishi L200. İmagine how big is the bird. "Lavender" a.k.a. "self blue" is a name for American slates which have double slate genes. Other than these there are different blue-slate coloured turkeys in Europe i.e. "Blaupe Puten" (in Germany) and Dindon Bleu (in France, different varieties they have). Murat Faik Özçelik


8. Crimson Seedcracker-Pyrenestes sanguineus

Crimson Seedcracker-Pyrenestes sanguineus

It is very difficult to keep these beautiful birds as an aviary species. Because they have specific requirement i.e. heat and humidity. The temperature should be over 25 degree Celcius and the humidity should be quite high to keep and breed these living jewels in an aviary environment. As an ornithologist and aviculturist keeping and breeding this species is a challenge even for me. I upload this footage to show the beak differences between individuals. It can be seen that one of the bird's beak is different than others as swollen at the base and convex cutting edges, and this bird's and another ones are bigger and thicker than the remaining. According to an American study, the beak difference between individuals in this species, is not related sex, age or subspecies. On the other hand there is a book, written by C. S. Roselaar, named 'Songbirds of Turkey' is a very detailed study and in this book Roselaar represents a new Bullfinch subspecies (Pyrrhula pyrrhula paphlagoniae) based on the similar beak differences (and body measurements. But actually P.p. paphlagoniae's size is not so different from P. p. germanica). Under this explanations, I kindly invite the ornithologists and anyone who has knowledge about genetical based individual differences and especially taxonomists (who have the knowledge of the subspecies recognition critteria) to discuss and share their opinions. Murat Faik Özçelik


9. Garrulus glandarius anatoliae-Eurasian Jay

Garrulus glandarius anatoliae-Eurasian Jay

This bird came for a moment to the persimmon tree while I was shooting small warblers. All smaller birds flew away. The type specimen of this subspecies was collected from Gözne (Mersin) area which is close to the place that I took this footage. According to Roselaar (1995), G. g. lendlii (Madarász, 1907) from Taurus Mountains and G. g. susianae (Keve, 1973) from Zagros Mountains are synonyms of this subspecies. Murat Faik Özcelik


10. Tufted Duck-Aythya fuligula

Tufted Duck-Aythya fuligula

I shoot this footage near Bolaman (Eastern Blacksea Coastland). I noticed a duck flock when I was driving on the highway and immediately (carefully) stopped on a pouch which was a few hundred meter away. We took our camcorders and approached as close as possible to the flock. There was about 300 Tufted duck on a small river delta. We (with my wife) took about half an hour video footage. There was all types of Tufted Ducks including pale base to bill variant, white-vented variant, eclipse, juvenile and hybrid birds. I use my Panasonic TM700 camcorder and Nikkor 500m mirror lens on my Manfrotto 190 tripod (old one) and Novoflex smallest ball head. Birds were c. 70 m away from us. The 35 m equivalent of the system that I use for this footage is c. 260X (13 000 mm) !.. There is some amount of chromatic Aberration that comes from cheaper prism-eyepiece system. And the resolution power limit of the Nikon mirror lens can be easily seen while zooming through camcorder's LCD screen. I mean with a better lens and better prism-eyepiece system, it is quite easy to take high quality long distance footages. Normally I do not prefer bigger birds for imaging, since they can be recorded easier and it is very typical for me to stop on a road while I am driving c. 100 km speed if I recognize a bird that worth picturing. That is why my trips are generally 10-20% longer than other people's. Murat Faik Özçelik


11. Nikkor 500mm Lens Test-2

Nikkor 500mm Lens Test-2

After I test my old Nikkor 500 mm mirror lens (actually latest version) with a mediocre quality eyepiece-prism set up, finally I did same test with a high quality 35 mm lens adapter (Showtime 35 mm adapter). The distance was c. 11 m and camcorder was at Intelligente Auto setting. I zoomed till 18X end of the camcorder zoom and saw the lens's limits. It seems that a good quality 35 mm lens's resolution is far beyond a HD camcorder's lens's resolution. As you can see on the footage, using 35 mm lenses on latest generation camcorders, opens a new door for nature videographers. These footages can be esaily compared with professional interchangeble lens camcorders, if the videographer is experienced on using light and editing footage. Because this set up gives 350mm to 6300mm zoom range (while zooming, there is some black spotted range, as you see in the footage) which was never available before in case of 35mm photography. Murat Faik Özçelik


12. Nikkor 500mm mirror lens test

Nikkor 500mm mirror lens test

These footages was taken with a specially designed set up. First I detached the back part (prism+eyepiece) of a Hama HR12 video teleconversion lens. Then I attached this to my Nikkor 500mm mirror telephoto lens (latest version). I use a 49-52mm step up ring and an old nikon extension tube's female bayonet (K3). I attached this combination directly to my Panasonic TM700 camcorder. In all footages, there were two UV filters in the set up (one on the backside of the lens, one infront of the camcorder) and on the Sparrow footage there was also a pair of isolation glasses between the set up and the bird. The results was quite good, especially for such a long distance. Vignetting was gone about 9X camcorder's zoom and it is possible to find the birds at about 6x camcorder zoom setting. This lens attachment set up gives about 10-12X magnification and totally c. 6000-7000 mm telephoto reach. Chromatic aberration is very very little and if there is some, it comes from cheaper eyepiece lenses. Anyway with this set up, experienced hands can achieve some very satisfactory results. Murat Faik Özçelik