Archive for April, 2011

Swallows – In flight and interacting.

Thursday, April 28th, 2011

Here is another from my recent session with the Swallows.

This time the light was a little too harsh giving me different problems to solve. On a positive note, the light enabled my to select a higher shutter speed and gain some valuable depth of field. On a negative note, the Swallow in flight kept casting its shadow onto the perched Swallow. This was most frustrating and a lot of images were discarded due to these shadows. The position of the birds in this particular image allowed at least some light to fall directly onto the faces of both birds, so I decided to keep this one.

Note to self – Try a little fill in flash when I come across this situation in the future.

Project “Swallows in flight”.

Sunday, April 24th, 2011

Here is the first of a mini project focussing on Swallows.

I took my first image of a Swallow in flight last year. Since then I have been waiting for them to return to try and improve and add to my collection. I saw my first Swallow this year at the beginning of April but it was this weekend when I had a chance to photograph them. The promised light didn’t quite materialise when this picture was taken, so trying to get a suitable shutter speed and enough depth of field for two birds was always going to be a challenge.

More from project “Swallows in flight” as soon as the light is kind to me.


A Grasshopper Warbler makes a Good Friday.

Friday, April 22nd, 2011

Finally, I have a reasonable image of a Grasshopper Warbler.

I spent a couple of mornings this week waiting for the sun to come up to try and record this fairly secretive bird. The bird has an incredible reeling call, quite unmistakable, which helped me identify the area that the bird was occupying. The first morning I took lots of images but the bird was hardly visible. I got images that proved its identity but nothing that I was happy with photographically. Today, I was a little more fortunate. Same bird, same place, but this time it spent a few seconds in the clear on the stem of a reed. A Good Friday indeed.

A more conventional Wheatear image.

Thursday, April 21st, 2011

Here is another from the recent Wheatear “project”.

This picture is slightly more conventional than the Wheatear image I shared in my last post. It shows the full bird, without all of the out of focus areas that some would feel competes with the main subject. Here the Wheatear is where you find then most of the time, in the field, surrounded by soil.

When I examine the high resolution file, this image is not critically sharp. I suspect that was caused by heat haze affecting the auto focus slightly. Fortunately the words “heat haze” and “UK” don’t go together very often ….

The Wheatear project continues….

Wednesday, April 20th, 2011

Here is another from the current Wheatear project.

I know that this will not be to everyones liking as there is a large amount of what is affectionately called “mush” around the subject. It was taken whilst lying amongst stinging nettles on the edge of a recently ploughed field. The Wheatear would come back to the grassy edge of the field and then scan the surrounding soil. Once it saw something of interest it would then fly back into the field. The angle of the evening light was not too bad when this image was taken but I would imagine that the light direction in the early morning will be better. Uh oh, I feel an early alarm call coming on….