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Old Jul 19, 2003, 9:06 AM   #1
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Default Yellowhammer in song



Yellowhammer Emberiza citrinella 15cm
A real countryside bird over here in the U.K. A very distinctive song that lets you know there's a Yellowhammer around.
Morston Downs in North Norfolk, England.

Nikon cp4500 + Swarovski AT80HD + 20-60X eyepiece. Image not cropped.
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Old Jul 20, 2003, 9:36 AM   #2
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Very nice picture. I'd be happy with it.

I'm in the process of pricing a setup like yours. It reassures me that it will be possible to get pictures of a quality I consider good. It's a pitty the picture is a bit out of focus at the feet, but you can't have everything.

Eric
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Old Jul 20, 2003, 10:24 AM   #3
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Thanks Eric.
Yep, good reason for the blurred feet.... there's actually a few leaves in between myself and the bird, these have almost been totally obscured by the shallow depth of field with this mag (scope e.p. @ 35x).... it's handy that they have vanished but the impact of the leaves is visible with the blur. Some of these leaves potruded into the sky (as a greyish blur) but Photshop helped there.

I'm thinking of uploading a full size jpeg to my website to allow those wondering about ultimate quality of the method to judge for themselves after downloading and printing it (be about 1mb but depends on which photo I want to sacrifice).
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Andy
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Old Jul 21, 2003, 6:32 AM   #4
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Nice work Andy, particularly fine colour and pin sharp head.
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Old Jul 21, 2003, 11:04 AM   #5
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I'd be very interested in the origional if you could post it. I'm on a cable modem so size isn't really a problem.

I assumed the fuzzy feet were because of DOF. Interesting.

I should probably bring this question into the digiscoping forum, but I was wondering about what subjects digiscoping works well for. Here is the situation I have in mind. A marsh hawk is hovering and drifting slowly with the wind. It's following the bends of a tidal flow which drains into a marsh. It's about ~300"/90 meters away from me. If I had a camera with focus tracking attached to the scope, could I track the bird in flight and take the picture when it pulls in its wings and dives?

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Old Jul 21, 2003, 5:45 PM   #6
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Thanks Graham: Just seen your Willow Warbler shot... will it add that one to your ad on my site, absolutely stunning.

Hi Eric.

No, the depth of field limitations wouldn't really be a factor as the feet are roughly the same distance from the lens as the in focus head. You can get distortion (focus problems) towards the outer edhes of the image when you zoom out to wide angle on the camera... because the camera is then looking at the whole (or much more) of the scope's eyepiece. The eyepiece of the scope is designed for the curved human eye (rather than a flat image capture device), so is also slightly curved itself. Zooming in with the camera eliminates much of this distortion, and some eyepieces are flatter than others.

Not much chance of capturing a bird in flight with digiscoping.... if this sight of the Marsh Hawk is a very regular occurence, then you may get lucky... but it will be down to more luck than judgement.
Reasons: Shutter lag on the camera used for digiscoping, the very small field of view at these magnifications to track the bird through the monitor of the camera... and that you need to manual focus the scope onto the moving subject.
It is possible, I have seen a few acceptable birds in flight shot with this method.... but you wouldn't choose this method for those type of shots.
Maybe you could get closer to the bird (hopefully preserving the right angle to get the desired shot)... otherwise it's a faster & longer lens with a t.c. :roll:

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Andy
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Old Jul 21, 2003, 9:41 PM   #7
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Gotcha. I wasn't sure if the lower angle would have put the feet on a different plane than the head (which looks great!) That and I really don't know how small the DOF is when digiscoping.

Someone here has built a mounting for a D100 with a 50mm f1.8. I might try the same thing with my 10D, but its not exactly my area of expertise so I'm not expecting much. But if I could, that would give me a very fast AF and shutter. I'm fairly good with the scope's focus but I doubt I'm good enough. I wasn't sure how much I could depend on the AF of the camera... but it sounds like I can't. That itís only good for small corrections.

I just don't want to spend the $5,500 for the 500mm f4. Maybe I could find one used? I know it will be shorter than I want and it's more money than I'd like to spend. I could afford it... but I'd rather not. Not until this economy picks up a bit so I won't worry about my job as much.

Unfortunately, closer to the bird was impossible because it was over a large tidal marsh and I was on the side of a fast road. But you are right in pointing that out. I can get so involved in watching the beauty of a raptor's flight and not think laterally about the situation.

Thanks for the info.

Eric
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