About Gene


Gene Koziara is a family medicine physician by training and is semi-retired. He is passionate about warbler photography, and has spent considerable time in the field with camera over the last 10 years, primarily working with warblers from the end of March thru late fall. Over that time Gene has learned a lot about warbler photography and has made many modifications on his approach to it. It takes a special skill set, not quickly or easily obtainable, to successfully do warbler photography. Gene has photographed all 37 eastern warblers, and most of them also on breeding grounds, from Georgia to several Canadian provinces. He knows where to go to find each targeted species, when to go to maximize composition opportunities, and how to locate them by habitat and song.

Gene has learned over the years that each warbler species has its own peculiarities when working with it, and that there is variability as well from bird to bird within a species. This is important when choosing which bird to work with and when. This know-how saves much valuable time in the field and can produce some outstanding composition opportunities.

Gene’s goal whenever possible is a singing male in a pleasing composition. His skill set helps to improve those odds. It is important to Gene to minimize habitat encroachment, and this also means choosing, when possible areas that do not have much birder/photographer pressure. It also means to choose areas where the targeted species are in good numbers and to work whenever possible prior to the hatching of young. When attracting a subject with the use of calls, Gene believes the only way to get truly good compositions is to endeavor to keep the subject curious and confident and to leave it feeling more dominant than it did prior to the session. If we base our behavior in the field on keeping those goals in mind, we will get better results, and any negative impact on the species will be minimized or altogether eliminated. Gene’s goal for each Warbler Photo Journey is to teach what he can to each participant about photographing warblers while helping them achieve their own warbler photography goals. He believes in a team effort approach to our work each day and to open communication between team members. The final goal is many pleasing images and an enjoyable Warbler Photo Journey for all.

Gene is married to Janelle, and they have three adult children.


Gene has had his bird and/or warbler photography published which includes but is not limited to the following:

1)BIRD CONSERVATION, The Magazine of American Bird Conservancy (spring 2019, Golden-winged Warbler)

2)HANDBOOK of WESTERN PALEARCTIC BIRDS volume II by Shirihai and Svensson (Cerulean warbler-first fall male and first fall female)

3)North American Birds a quartely journal of ornithological record published by the American Birding Association (various)

4)Chicago Daily Herald; monthly column Words on Birds featured a Yellow-billed Cuckoo image

5)Sierra Club of Canada for an endangered species of Canada campaign (Williamson’s Sapsucker)

6)Birder’s Guide, American Birding Association (Wood Thrush, 2019 Travel issue)

7) The Cornell Lab of Ornithology All About Birds website (various images have appeared here)