October 23, 2013

Cassowary, Australia

Photograph by Christian Ziegler

This Month in Photo of the Day: The Power of Photography

A cassowary peers through foliage in northeast Queensland, Australia. Females like this one can weigh 160 pounds. No one knows what the casque on her head is for, but it could be a sexual ornament.

See more pictures from the September 2013 feature story “Big Bird.”

Watch photographer Christian Ziegler and writer Olivia Judson follow their noses to find cassowaries »

50 comments
Roger Bouws
Roger Bouws

Beautiful ancient bird; however that casque will disembowel you faster than you can blink.


Shuborna Senjuti
Shuborna Senjuti

We just photographed it last week in Cairns Zoo- huge bird!

Ashok Naidu
Ashok Naidu

marvelous, what a great interpretation

Gentiane Cochez
Gentiane Cochez

I thought the casque ob the head was for protecting it when they run after something into the forest without looking at,  like an helmet?

Anna Veitch
Anna Veitch

The Cassowary is a beauty. It looks like a dinosaur with very lovely lashes :)

Jerry Wolfe
Jerry Wolfe

Very nice picture. Good fading of foliage into the birds head. I wish they go back to "Download as Wallpaper at 1900 x 1220" and I wish there was a very brief description of equipment and settings used. The latter would be a very good learning tool for us that are working at getting more unique with our equipment.

Still love the website though and have for several years.

Lauren Dawson
Lauren Dawson

These things are absolutely terrifying, but this is such a beautiful picture. 

Shannon T
Shannon T

She looks mad. I love the green against the blue. Well done.

Mary Ann Bolton
Mary Ann Bolton

I envy her the eyelashes, but she reminds me of her relatives in Jurassic Park!

Vikram Singh
Vikram Singh

Almost all the pic is blurred. This is bad photography. A 8 year old can take a better pic than this.

Justin Sykes
Justin Sykes

With slapped on makeup, and eyelashes from the dress-up box, this old bird looks fearsome.  I bet she knows all the gossip in the bush.

Excellent use of focus with only a tiny portion of the frame that is not blurred.  The clash of blue on green is jarring - but I assume this was deliberate.   Striking and powerful, well done Mr Ziegler.

Technicality / Composition / Content / X factor / originality = 7/10 zoom lenses 

Philip Ashwood
Philip Ashwood

@Vikram Singh Mr. Singh, rest assured that no 8 year old could take this photo, but then neither could anyone else that doesn't understand the basic principles of depth of field and the creative uses of such. Watch and learn.

Liliana Campuzano-Arias
Liliana Campuzano-Arias

@Vikram Singh Also when you are so close to something as beautiful as this bird I think the decision of what to focus is obvious and not as easy as it seams.

Marco Nogra
Marco Nogra

@Vikram Singh this is called selective focusing Vikram and this is widely used on the composition technicalities in photography if you want to isolate a small portion of your framing as your subject you can always rely on this technique.   

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