Puffins And Razorbills

Razorbill On The Isle Of May
Razorbill On The Isle Of May

A couple of days ago I was looking through the photos from our visit to the Isle of May last year when I decided to take a look at a couple of shots that I had not processed.

They were photos of razorbills. I had to photograph them against the backdrop of the open sea, which meant that the camera set the scene optimally but the birds looked very underexposed and the faces were just dark shadows.

If I had set exposure compensation – see my article on exposure compensation here – I might have produced a better RAW image. Be that as it may, I recall that I opened the images up in Photoshop, but I don’t think I tried very hard to optimise them.

Enter Photoshop CS6

I opened the images up again a couple of days ago, and they were easy to process. Perhaps it is because I have an updated version of Photoshop. Certainly, the tools in Adobe Camera Raw are very good for optimising images.

Razorbill On The Isle Of May - Close-Up
Razorbill On The Isle Of May – Close-Up

Seeing the razorbill’s beak close up makes me realise that they have a somewhat similar appearance to the puffin’s beak, with the markings on the side of the upper part of the beak.

It’s not so surprising because they are both part of the same family of auks.

Razorbills and puffins don’t compete for the same food, however. Puffins eat sand eels, as you can see in the photo below – while Razorbills (which are quite a bit bigger) eat juvenile cod, sprats, and herring.

Puffin On The Isle Of May
Puffin On The Isle Of May

You will find these and more than fifty other images of birds in our Bird Ecards.