Rich Ditch's Photography Blog

May 31, 2010

Great Blue Heron in flight

Filed under: Birds, favorite places, Gilbert Water Ranch — richditch @ 10:25 pm
Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Heron

Flight shots of birds are not my strength; I assume this is mostly because I get so little opportunity to practice them here in AZ. I think it helps a lot to have access to roosts for herons: such a location means that the photographer has birds that fly repeatable roots at close enough range that the photographer can get lots of practice and fine tune shooting technique. Here in  AZ we don’t have large heronries so I herons I get to photograph in flight tend to be random encounters with solitary birds moving into or out of a distant pond.

This Great Blue Heron was one of the few subjects I found on a recent trip to the Gilbert Water Ranch. I saw it headed in my general direction (yes, the phrase reminds me of Monty Python and the Holy Grail), and I hoped it would come close enough and stay low enough for some shots. I was able to lock on to the heron with an AF sensor and follow it with the viewfinder while the camera/lens was mounted on the Sidekick gimbal head on my tripod. The gimbal head helps, but it is easier to follow a flying bird with a hand held camera if your rig isn’t too heavy. If I had a 300/4 instead of my 300/2.8 I’d try hand holding for flight shots.

This isn’t a great shot by any means, but it will have to do  until I get something better. Taken 5/24/10 at 7:34 am (over two hours after sunrise), Nikon D200, 300/2.8 plus TC20E (2x), ISO 400, 1/1600th second at f/5.6, aperture priority matrix meter, 37% of frame.

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1 Comment »

  1. […] Great Blue Heron in flight « Rich Ditch’s Photography Blog […]

    Pingback by Little Blue Heron in the Everglades — June 10, 2010 @ 3:54 am


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