A bird with something in it’s mouth, or singing the blues is more interesting than a tight billed bird. I understand that sometimes there is an outstanding shot of a bird with nothing in its mouth and it is not singing. But, in general try to get that type of action. Fighting or using its claws is fair game too. Note too that all four photos tell a story. The Belted Kingfisher with the minnow in its mouth was a lucky high percentage shot. Kingfishers are one of the toughest birds to photograph. They are fast, elusive and don’t like a lot of people around. The settings using a 5oomm canon lens with a 1.4x extender was: f/9.5, iso 800, 1/2000.
Nice shot of the Spotted Towhee but compared to the other “action” shots it is out of the competition.