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Old Jun 2, 2007, 10:32 PM   #1
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Hi All,

Nice to have the forum back!

I was out very early in the morning, and saw this juvenile BCNH actively fishing. It was light enough for my DS to AF, but the shutter speeds were ridiculously slow (like 1/15, f6.7, ISO 1600), so I mounted the AF 540 FGZ, which I just happened to have in my pocket. With the Tamron w/stacked converters, this combination weighs a ton, so I stuck it on the tripod that I usually carry in my trunk.

The Night Heron happily continued fishing while I'm doing all this, but by the time I got all the stuff together, it was about 60 ft away, on the other side of the little lake we were at. I set the flash comp to +1 on both the flash and in the camera, and added another +.7 Ev comp, not remembering whether that would make a difference. A test shot showed that I could get underexposed, but useable stuff at ISO 400, so I started shooting. The delay for the flash to charge was maddening, but I coped. It was really nice to have 714mm available. . .

Brightened a little, cropped only to 5x7, sharpened a touch, and with some correction for retinal reflection (red eye doesn't seem appropriate for a bird with red eyes), Here are some of the results.

Climbing around. . .


What was that? . . .


. . .Just a little bluegill that I caught while his flash was charging. . . ARGHHHH!


Just the right size for a snack!!


An after snack perch in the dead tree sounds like a good idea. . .


I don't know about you, but I'm really glad that this forum is back. . .

Scott

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Old Jun 2, 2007, 10:57 PM   #2
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Great series. I'm surprised that he stayed at his task with your flashing.
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Old Jun 2, 2007, 10:58 PM   #3
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Scott

That was quality work. I am sure I would be panicking in the same situation you were in . Trying to set up the gear shooting birdie is usu a no no. I would have chicken out and pushed it up to iso3200. But that is just me. Of course using flash was better but the alternative of loosing it entirely is very high stake. Glad that you pulled it off brillantly and you certainly deserve all the credit.


Daniel
p.s. with the amount of heavy gear you have , you certainly have no need to go to a gym
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Old Jun 2, 2007, 11:20 PM   #4
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All I can say is that you've managed to take a whole series of pictures that are OUTSTANDING! Thanks for posting what you did - it sends a clear message that it's always worth trying something you think is right. If it had been me, I would have stood there, admiring him fishing and fuming that there wasn't enough light to take a decent picture, I wouldn't have tried what you did. Well done!

And yes, I'm delighted to have the board back. Thank you, all the IS folks who have workedto get it back up.
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Old Jun 3, 2007, 2:35 AM   #5
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Excellent shots, made even better by the method used to carry them out.


Darren

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Old Jun 3, 2007, 8:19 AM   #6
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Lovely images, snostorm. You were luckier than I was. Had a heron gliding across a pond as I was pulling up last weekend. It was flying right towards me and landed about 50 feet away. But, as I was slowly and quietly opening the door, it flew off the pond away from me. Got some shots quickly, but no where near yours. I had to grab and shoot.

Very good!
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Old Jun 3, 2007, 8:33 AM   #7
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scott, great series. are these guys fully fledgedyet or are they walking, climbing to hunt.

i can't wait for my green backs to get to this stage.. rain permitting. and it's coming in again.



roy
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Old Jun 3, 2007, 12:43 PM   #8
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Hi All,

Thanks for your attention and comments.

Trojanroc -- In my experience, flash doesn't bother most birds and other animals, nor does the sound of the shutter. I think that movement will scare them away much more often.

Daniel, Harriet, and Darren -- I'm trying to get more quality this year, and since I have the stuff, I decided that I would make every effort to raise the standard of my shots, even at the expense of convenience, which had been a priority before. Since I already have good shots of most of the species that live around, or move through here, I want better shots now. I've rationalized buying all kinds of stuff by telling myself that it would improve my ability to get quality pics in such and such circumstances, then I find myself not using it because it's inconvenient or not expedient. . .

nhmom -- I'd have to say that it was luck -- more often than not, my experiences have been like yours -- stealth notwithstanding, herons and egrets are very wary of anything moving around them. This guy didn't seem to care much to my great advantage.

Roy -- I don't know the timetable of development, but my guess from what I've observed is that this is a second year juvenile, and it appears that it's just starting to turn grey, which seems to be an intermediate coloring before the back turns dark blue in full adulthood. I think that fledglings are much more gawky looking.

I'm looking forward to your being able to show us the progress of the baby Greens. I know that they breed around here, but I don't know where -- the only ones I've seen are adults, and the only rookeries that I know of are GBHs only. A Green actually flew in and perched nearby while I was shooting this guy, but I couldn't get a decent shot before it took off -- I was surprised that it was considerably smaller than this guy -- I'd only seen them separately before, and assumed that they were about the same size.

Scott


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Old Jun 3, 2007, 12:48 PM   #9
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i know the yellow crested night heron is larger than the greens. not much but definately larger. i have a regular one of these visit.

roy
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