Gull Eating Floating Fish

Sometimes when we’re out with our cameras Mother Nature can choose to reveal some ‘slices of life’ to us. This short article features some images of a gull eating a floating fish.

NOTE: Click on images to enlarge.

Nikon 1 V3 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300 mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 300 mm, efov 810 mm, f/5.6, 1/2000, ISO-450

My afternoon at the Hendrie Valley Sanctuary had been a bit slow in terms of photographing birds-in-flight so I was ‘on scan’ looking for other potential subjects. I spotted a gull grabbing a fish that was floating in the water. I was fully expecting it to take flight with it.

Nikon 1 V3 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300 mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 300 mm, efov 810 mm, f/5.6, 1/2000, ISO-280

Instead the bird decided to peck and pull at the fish carcass. Since there wasn’t much else going on I became engrossed watching the gull with its meal.

Nikon 1 V3 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300 mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 300 mm, efov 810 mm, f/5.6, 1/2000, ISO-500

With some concerted effort the gull was able to tear off a few pieces of flesh.

Nikon 1 V3 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300 mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 300 mm, efov 810 mm, f/5.6, 1/2000, ISO-640

It continued to peck and tear at the floating fish, often adjusting the position of the carcass.

Nikon 1 V3 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300 mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 300 mm, efov 810 mm, f/5.6, 1/2000, ISO-640

Once it got the fish turned over with its under belly exposed the gull got even more aggressive with the carcass, eventually opening up the belly of the fish.

Nikon 1 V3 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300 mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 300 mm, efov 810 mm, f/5.6, 1/2000, ISO-560

At that point the gull focused on the entrails of the fish and began to tug and pull at them.

Nikon 1 V3 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300 mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 300 mm, efov 810 mm, f/5.6, 1/2000, ISO-500

This seemed to be the prize that the gull was after and it began to devour the guts of the fish.

Nikon 1 V3 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300 mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 300 mm, efov 810 mm, f/5.6, 1/2000, ISO-500

After spending about 10 minutes pecking, pulling and eating parts of the fish the gull flew off. Watching this scene wasn’t something that squeamish people would enjoy, but I found it quite engrossing in its own right.

Technical Note:
All photographs were captured hand-held using Nikon 1 gear as noted in the article. Images were produced from RAW files using my standard process of DxO PhotoLab, CS6,  and the Nik Collection.

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