For the past few years a Common Blackbird (Turdus merula) and a Eurosian Blackcap (Sylvia atricapilla) have been regular visitors in our backyard. Those tiny visitors put their trust on getting some food over the winter and there is something romantic about attending them each morning and give them pears and apples. The Common Blackbird is very tame and does not hesitate coming very close to get a bite, even though I am standing at arms length. The Eurosian Blackcap is not as easy to handle. It is very quick and is not exactly tame. Both of them are in the backyard every day and often the Common Blackbird is waiting for his doze of the day. This is probably the fourth year these two stay in the backyard for the whole winter. They have therefore gained the status of pets in my home in addition to our dog Kútur, a Shih-tzu who guards the backyard from the many cats trying to get the birds. The birds are familiar with the dog and seem to know he is on their side. In our special way – me and my dog are bird-whisperers.

The Eurosian Blackcap is most difficult to photograph. The only way to get him is to use the longer lenses. The Common Blackbird is easier. To begin with I used both of them with the 500 mm lens untill I realized I could just go out and stand next to the Common Blackbird using the 70-200 lens – which today is a great bird-lens – at least for pets.