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The first one is more balanced image as the whole tree top is positive space. When you close-up the two limbs, right and left of the perch, become negative space giving a less balanced feel. If you clone them out then the second image would be my favorite
In any case is a very pleasant capture with a great pose
I know what you mean. But, I didn't want to clone the shot just yet. I shot this scene with others, so it would be pretty evident if surrounding branches were cloned out to clean it up (It's the altered reality thing). I'll probably do a shot just for myself where cloning will be involved and the bird will be more significant part of the frame.