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The poaka or pied stilt is common around many of our coasts. It perversely, contributed to the decline in our native black stilt by inter-breeding and hybridising with it.

It has the one thing photographers- especially in the digital age- dislike. That is both black and white feathers. This generates a challenge to expose correctly, more so than if you were using a good negative-film.

The trick often with coastal birds is getting close enough for a decent photograph. Beaches offer little in the way of cover so both patience and luck are necessary ingredients to a decent photo

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