Discussion: baiting birds for photos 討論:餌誘拍鳥

I think there is a fundamental different between feeding and baiting.

Feeding is for the good of the birds, while there maybe other activities such as watching and photographing as an added benefit to the feeder.
Baiting, is primarily for photographing - it may or may not do harm to the bird.

I wonder whether migratory birds have different nutritional needs in different time, so if you feed it with something it don't normally eat during the time of the year, maybe it would be affected. Just my speculation and i would leave it to experts.

I am not saying baiting is wrong, however for the sake of nature appreciation i would not encourage baiting to get satisfying photos.


I would like to try to translate the original article as per Eric's request.
I try to translate in the exact same meaning so the wordings might not be as nice as the original.
Please comment if you found something i didn't translate well.

Baiting for photographing birds

I've recently learned that number of bird species found in Long Valley Wetlands has increased by 20%, while some species re-appeared at the site. Thus i went to Long Valley in the weekend with my camera and appreciate the birds there.

As I've said long time ago that Long Valley is not such a astonishing place for bird watching, because the birds there are always hiding from you. You wouldn't be able to see them unless you pay enough patient and attention. I have chosen a wet field full of water to wait for waders coming and flying away, photographing the beauty of them. Although they are common species like Wood Sandpipers, Black-winged Stilts and Common Snipes, I enjoyed watching them foraging, playing, running around... free from disturbances and I forgot all my worries in my head.

There are still acitive farming in Long Valley such as lettuce and rice farming, as well as lotus that blossoms in summer and withered away in autumn-winter. The different habitats attracts a variety of birds. On holidays, people hold their heavy tripods, long lens on professional cameras and walk to and fro on the fields, taking photographs of the landscape and beauty (of birds and wildlife) that look beautiful to them.

I found a group of photographers some distance away from me, pointing their lenses towards a patch of bush, paying extreme attention and prepared for photographs. There was a Bluethroat, an uncommon bird. When it appeared there were a bunch of shutter sounds from the cameras, just like welcoming an international star who hasn't appear for a long time.

I saw this little cute bird, with a bunch of blue feathers on its breast, coming from the bush and jump on a tree branch, satisfying photographers' needs by giving different poses.

The bird soon disappered in the bush, ending the intense photographing. The photographers relaxed, reviewed their photos and discussed with others. Their discussions gradually became loud and some people even started to smoke. These are the worst things to do in bird-watching because birds are sensitive to movements and noise, while smoking is causing air pollution around.

And then a photographer stood up, taking a little box towards the tree branch where the bird stood, and put some unknown things on that branch. I now understood why the bluethroat came back again despite the loud noise - people were baiting it. The beauty of the bird were all made by the photographers.

I don't know what bait they use and whether the bait would make birds sick. The rules of bird-watching is to maintain the nature as it was and do not interfere with the birds, shouldn't it? Baiting for photographing birds would allow the most beautiful photos to be taken, but are those photos real and natural?


[ Last edited by Beetle at 30/12/2010 20:25 ]


To Guy,

I Think you are already a birder because you were observing birds behaviour and thought about them when you are photographing.
some photographers lack these and taking a well-done photograph is the only thing in their mind, all the time.

[ Last edited by Beetle at 31/12/2010 09:32 ]


人誰無過? 你問我有沒有用過閃燈拍照? 有。 有沒有拍過別人餌誘出來的鳥? 有。 有沒有趕走過雀? 有。
以上所提到的, 就算是資深鳥攝者, 當中很多人曾經有做過。 (資深鳥攝者不一定等如資深觀鳥者/資深鳥友)
正如smp所提到, 我曾經做錯過, 我是不是沒有資格說做這些事是不對的/不光采的?
當然, 若果有人說一套做一套, 那絕對是可恥的。


本帖討論關於餌誘拍鳥, 既然每一件事都應該宏觀看, 就不應針對著某人/某事批評, 此舉根本無助討論, 亦只會引致"不必要的討論"被管理者刪除。

Everybody have done wrong things in the past. If you ask me have i ever used flash to take photos of birds, or took bird photos that people baited the bird out, or maked the bird fly away, I would answer "yes" to all of the above. I believe many experienced bird photographers have done the same in the past.
As smp has said, If i have done wrong in the past, does it mean i don't have the right to say those things are wrong / are disgraceful?
Of course, if i say something is wrong but i still do it after so, this is of course shameful.

However, do every bird watcher/bird photographer need to report what they have done wrong?
Do all of those need to be criticized by somebody?

The post is about baiting birds for photos and we need to look at the broader picture, absolutely not by criticizing somebody / some past events (especially those that are irrelevant). These would not help in discussion and would only lead to an end, like deleted posts and locked posts by administrator of the forum.

[ Last edited by Beetle at 1/01/2011 22:07 ]


To eric,

Thanks for clarifying about wordings. I thought baiting is using food while luring may use something else, but I am not aware of the ultimate intension (killing of prey etc.).

The "unknown thing" used to put on the branch would probably be some sort of food rather than some magic paste. I believe it was some sort of worms kept in a little box, but the writer of the original article didn't know what it was or just did't want to say. Sorry for misleading you and maybe next time i would probably add some captions.

I do really want to translate the chinese replies for those who don't fully understand but i don't really have time to translate all the posts.
Would try to summarize some of the main ideas from different people (i am not going to translate meaningless criticisms):

- luring ("baiting") for photos is a kind of cheating
- luring is not a graceful way of taking photos
- some people may not have the chance to observe real behaviours of a bird if some other people are luring it

- putting food to a bird doesn't do any harm to the bird
- luring would help ensuring photographers to behave better, avoid flushing of birds etc.


[ Last edited by Beetle at 2/01/2011 00:33 ]


應VRII翻譯英文回覆的重點 (抱歉沒有時間翻譯全文)

-在香港, 因為人口及雀鳥密度都高, 餵飼雀鳥需要經過詳細考慮
-在某些地點(如獅子山郊野公園, 金山郊野公園, 城門郊野公園, 大埔滘自然保護區)及附近地區餵飼野生動物是犯法的
-(張浩輝博士) 香港觀鳥會不應該鼓勵用誘餌, 但也不應該批評此舉; 有時很難界定"為保育雀鳥餵飼"及"餵飼雀鳥去拍照"