Elegant Trogon in southeast Arizona. Chiricahua Mountains, South Fork trail - charles grisham (natureshots) alabamabirder

Elegant Trogon at South Fork.

This Trogon was eating a fat caterpillar looking creature as you can see. It is worth noting that if you want to get a good view of Trogon, and by that I mean get pretty close to one, you have to find a Trogon that will let you approach it. I had come across 2 other Trogons before this one and both of them would not let me get close at all. But then I found this Trogon that appeared to care less that I was stalking it.

In watching this particular Trogon I realized something really incredible about Trogons. When they hunt they move their heads in what I would describe as robotic. For instance, this one when hunting would scan the ground very methodically while looking for prey. But its movement is not jerky at all, like most birds. Its head movement was very slow and constant, much like a video camera that you see in movies that scans left and right, yet with this Trogon, once his head was turned a certain way, instead of turning back to look the other way, he would rotate his head either up or down to a new angle to then scan in the other direction.

I took this photograph with a Canon 40d, using a Canon 400mm 5.6l lens.