Nature Photo Challenge: Patterns

Another day, another challenge. This one is from Denzil, of Denzil Nature. He invites us to find and photograph patterns in nature. Nature provides such a rich variety that it’s hard to know where to start. In the end, I thought I’d stick with – birds.

There are understated patterns. Look how the curlew blends in with the rough grasses of its moorland habitat:

The patterned curlew blends in so well with the less-than patterned grasses

There are ones that are slightly less understated. These sparrows in a Berlin café planned on stealing a few crumbs.

Then there’s this female mallard. Understated too, but with a soupçon of energising colour.

Here’s a puffin. That assertively-painted beak begs to be noticed too.

We’re getting gaudier now: this mandarin duck appeared – just once – on a local pond.

Even the pond water has rippling patterns.

Showiest of all, the peacock. From respondent tail feathers to elegant headdress, this bird is a symphony of pattern.

The header photo shows a murmuration of starlings. Here, at this time of year, just before nightfall, the birds regularly fill the skies with a constant swirl and swoop of pattern-making . You can read about it here, and – especially – here, when thousands of birds chose our garden for their evening display.

Author: margaret21

I'm retired and living in North Yorkshire, where I walk as often as I can, write, volunteer, and travel as often as I can.

51 thoughts on “Nature Photo Challenge: Patterns”

    1. We’ve yet to see a murmuration this year, yet I gather they’ve been fantastic. Of course I like peacocks – who wouldn’t? But I tend to prefer more understated beauty, such as the female mallard.

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  1. Super shots Margaret. That close-up of the mallard feathers is exquisite. And the mandarin duck with its reflection truly beautiful! Thanks for taking part and inspiring us all!

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  2. Absolutely incredible bird feather and colour patterns. They can camouflage so well or perhaps say keep away or come close my dear, like the peacock strutting his stuff. Wonderful array of photos.


    1. What between the spectacle they are, and the noise they make, peacocks are nobody’s secret. And often, subtle is best. Thanks so much for introducing Denzil. I was trying to cut back on blogging pals. *sigh*

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  3. Great idea to focus on the patterns in birds’ feathers. Those we often think of as dull, like the sparrows and female mallard, are anything but if we look closely enough, as you have done 🙂 But yes, the peacock beats them all!

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  4. Lovely patterns. We are too close to the starlings to see the actual murmurations and I see on your other post a very similar ‘starling tree’ as mine. And the car… not to mention roof windows. But they are fascinating to watch.

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    1. You think the same as me on the peacock question, though having met both puffins and peacocks in real life, I think puffins are rather more down to earth – literally: they’re always fossicking around in their burrows.

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