Southern Carmine Bee-Eater
Merops nubicoides
The Southern Carmine Bee-Eater (Merops nubicoides) is a colonial cavity nester in earthen banks along the Okavango River in Botswana. These birds were resting outside their nesting burrows near Shakawe in October, 1998. They were photographed with a Canon EOS 1N & EF 300 mm F4L IS lens and a 1.4X extender using a 540 EZ flash as fill at f5.6. These photos were shot hand-held with the camera and lens on a BushHawk shoulder mount. A Really Right Stuff flash bracket was used to elevate the flash above the hot shoe on the camera; this helps avoid too much eye reflection which is sometimes a problem with flash photography of birds. The bottom shot shows a flock of these birds along the river bank.