For a location photographer it is always exciting when assignments take you to unusual places. Making environmental portraits inside a birdcage the size of a tennis court was a unique experience.
University of Pennsylvania animal behaviorist Dr. David White leads a course called Research Experience in Animal Behavior. He supervises students as they do hands-on research.
In the photo above, Greg posed the students to show them engaged in their research.
In a past issue of the Penn Arts & Sciences magazine the publication ran an article focused on one of Dr. White's student groups who observed the behavior of cowbirds. Greg was asked to visit the research group and their professor at their aviary in the Morris Arboretum just outside of Philadelphia.
Cowbirds have an unusual reproductive strategy, termed brood parastic. They lay their eggs in the nests of other birds, and those birds end up raising the baby cowbirds. The fledgling cowbirds are nourished by the host parents at the expense of their own young.
The location for these environmental portraits of Dr. White and his students gives the photos a rich sense of place.