Photographing the winter birds at the feeders is a pleasurable way to pass time during the cold winter months. This view of my deck shows my "left-over bird feeder", a feeder that I constructed from odds and ends left over from various other projects from years past including left-over shingles from a shed I built over twenty years ago.
To utilize the deck feeder as a outdoor bird studio required a place to hide and my old pop-up Outhouse blind fit perfectly on the opposite end of the deck. At this distance I could obtain good frame filling shots while still being just a little over the minimum focus distance of the Canon 600 F4 lens.
A weathered branch screwed to the deck railing wrapped with a vine still retaining a few leaves provided a good natural looking perch while adding a spot of color to the photographs.
Within just a couple of days the birds were utilizing the new perch as if it had always been there.
Male Cardinal sits on the "natural" perch
The evergreen just beyond the feeder provides numerous scenic perches as well as cover from the occasional hawk attack.
Backyard bird feeding is a very popular past-time and with just a little thought and effort nearly any backyard feeder can be converted into an outstanding outdoor bird studio.