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Old Jan 16, 2005, 9:40 AM   #1
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It was a stinking lousy weather day on Saturday where I live - freezing rain all day long and the type of weather where you just want to stay indoors. Looking out a window at the front of my house, I noticed a group of these varied thrushes foraging in my front yard. I tried taking a few shots of them through my window but they didn't come out too great (dirty windows...). So then I just stood in the entryway of my home and grabbed a few more pictures. This one is of a female that had just dug up a filbert nut. I should have adjusted my shooting parameters so I could get a faster shutter speed as the image is a bit soft - I didn't think quickly enough...

Here's a behavioral note: I've typically found these birds in the past only in the upper levels of coniferous forests. I believe the ice storm forced lots of birds that wouldn't ordinarily frequent suburban neighborhoods to come down to these areas for some easier foraging.

20D, 300mm f/4 with 1.4x, 1/50 second @ f/5.6, ISO 400. Cropped to 25% of original, levels, neat image, usm.



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Old Jan 16, 2005, 1:31 PM   #2
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wow...1/50 f5.6 and iso 400...tough day for birding!

not bad for the situation geoff! it is a bit soft, but, not too bad..especially for 1/50

love the seed thing in it's beak though

Vito
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Old Jan 16, 2005, 8:49 PM   #3
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Sure, it's a little softer than you might like and the pose isn't exactly stunning. But it's fun to just go out and grab a shot. Opportunity shots are a little surprise gift.

I have been known to shoot out my back door on bad days.

Now I have to ask... was this hand held? It sounds like it was. Braced against the door frame (you or the camera)? I've gotten good results in 1/50 or less with my 600mm on occasion, but that was using the best long lens technic and every trick I could come up with.

Nicely done.

Eric
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Old Jan 16, 2005, 9:09 PM   #4
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Hey there, Eric - this was a handheld shot at 1/50 second. Where I had a clear view of the thrush there was nothing to brace myself against. And if it weren't so darn cold out and moist at the time I might have gone to the trouble of toting out my 10lb Bogen 3036 tripod.

I should have a Feisol carbon fiber monopod arriving in the next week or so. It's a little known brandname from Taiwan that had been getting very good reviews from people up on the Nikonians website and dpreview. 80% of the quality of a Gitzo for a whole lot less cost. That's what I would have used here had it been available...
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