Barry Kent MacKayArt by Barry Kent MacKay
Art and Photo Presentation

In this section are copies of original works of art. All of them are dedicated to helping us live according to unconditional love and compassion, which is the foundation of our peaceful means of bringing true and lasting peace to all of God's creatures, whether they are human beings or other animals.

Snow Bunting (Plectrophenax nivalis)

Snow Bunting (Plectrophenax nivalis)
(Artwork - 125)
Snow Bunting (Plectrophenax nivalis)

The Snow Bunting nests above the treeline, well up into the high arctic, although there are some records of them nesting above the treeline on mountains further south than the arctic and subarctic regions where they most commonly occur as a breeding species. After the nesting season they are given to forming flocks, at times very large, and moving south in the winter to more populous regions where they are seen by many more people. Most paintings and photographs of Snow Buntings show them in their lovely winter plumage when they have a patterns of soft tan-coloured edges that, in the spring, wear off to reveal their crisply black and white summer plumage. They are also called "snowbirds" and "snowflakes".

The female in retains some of the brownish colour in summer, and shows more of it in winter.

Here I have shown a pair, female above, male below, feeding a chick who has just fledged from a nearby nest. They are perched on an old skull of a muskox, a mammal that also occurs in the high arctic, although to them it is just another rock; to me it hints at the looming threat of global climate change to such arctic species. Already there has been some concern expressed that because of earlier springs the nesting may be “out of sync” with the development of natural food sources to feed the young.

The painting is in acrylics on Russian birch panel and was done approximately life size.

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Copyright © Barry Kent MacKay
Barry describes himself as a Canadian artist/writer/naturalist.
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