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Tim Laman's Image

Found on the southwestern slopes of Mount Hagen, Papua New Guinea, the King of Saxony bird-of-paradise calls all day, but only very occasionally displays, and for just a few seconds.

It took Tim a while to find the perfect vantage point to wait for the bird to emerge and display against a backdrop of vegetation. The male’s head-wire feathers are twice the length of its body and usually lie down its back, but during the display they are flicked forward over its head. To add to the eye-catching effect, the male pumps up its body.

Behind the lens

Tim Laman

Tim Laman


Tim is a field biologist and wildlife photojournalist with a reputation for returning from the wild with shots of nearly impossible subjects. His pioneering research in the rainforest canopy led to a PhD from Harvard University and the first of many articles for National Geographic magazine. His work has garnered numerous awards, including many in Wildlife Photographer of the Year.

Image details

  • Canon EOS-1D Mark II
  • 600mm f4 lens
  • 1/180 sec at f5.6  •   ISO 400
  • Mt. Hagen, Papua New Guinea
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