There are several species of songbirds that are notoriously hard to photograph. Most of them are fairly small and constantly on the move. The Golden-crowned Kinglet (Regulus satrapa) is one of these. Often it will respond to pishing and perch for a quick look at you, before heading back into the thicket or branches where it continues about its business of looking for small insects to eat.

This week we’ve had a few sunny days, and I’ve walked up the road during my lunch hour to a small group of  older Douglas-firs and Sitka Spruce. This area seems particularly active with Dark-eyed Juncos, Red-breasted Nuthatch, and the occasional Golden-crowned Kinglet. There’s a trickle running through a ditch which provides a source of water and the tangle of shrubs which makes good habitat with plenty of food and shelter. Nearby hedgerows are always good for small songbirds.

Golden-crowned Kinglet (Regulus satrapa)
The distinctive striping and golden crown make the diminutive Golden-crowned Kinglet (Regulus satrapa) easy to identify. Constantly on the move, it is a challenge to photograph!

I spotted this Golden-crowned Kinglet feeding on the Sitka Spruce and managed to get a single good photograph of it. Fortunately the light was excellent and the bird cooperated briefly (I’ve got plenty of images where the kinglet isn’t visible due to body position or blocked by branches or blurred due to movement).

A little bit of luck resulted in this golden opportunity!