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Old 30-12-2009, 08:21   #981
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Ended up at Muriwai Gannet colony the other week, holding a nikon D90 and 75-300.

The colony:


The birds:










Such an ace spot
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Old 30-12-2009, 09:09   #982
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Wow Rob - they are superb!
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Old 30-12-2009, 09:29   #983
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wow indeed ! Lovely birds, and pics look bang on for focus & dof.
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Old 30-12-2009, 10:27   #984
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Fantastic - I love gannets and some of those shots are amazing
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Old 10-01-2010, 14:36   #985
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Fieldfare

This Fieldfare hasn't left my garden all day. He's been feeding on the apples I put out. I believe their on the RSPB red list.







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Old 12-01-2010, 21:34   #986
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I've been pretty slack with the wildlife photograph lately but here is a quick shot I took in the local park. For fun I also made a video diary:

Grey Squirrel in snow (+ video link)

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Old 12-01-2010, 21:51   #987
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Nice one Richard.

But I think you left your video camera in the park!
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Old 12-01-2010, 21:56   #988
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Nice fieldfare - they are on the red list but then so are starlings and sparrows!

Last edited by DeadYankee; 13-01-2010 at 00:44.
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Old 12-01-2010, 22:03   #989
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Arthur Fowler View Post
Nice one Richard.

But I think you left your video camera in the park!
yeah I got half way home before I remembered...
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Old 12-01-2010, 23:06   #990
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Quote:
Originally Posted by silverpenguin7 View Post
I've been pretty slack with the wildlife photograph lately but here is a quick shot I took in the local park. For fun I also made a video diary:

Grey Squirrel in snow (+ video link)

excellent shot and video great blog too
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Old 13-01-2010, 00:42   #991
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Arthur, Spooky, thank you...appreciated

Loving those Gannet photos further up the thread Rob!
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Old 13-01-2010, 09:57   #992
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Nice shot and I quite enjoyed the vid, a well put together piece and congrats on the BBC showing.
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Old 13-01-2010, 15:05   #993
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Great squizzel pic Richard, good video too!

Quote:
Originally Posted by john.hem View Post
This Fieldfare hasn't left my garden all day. He's been feeding on the apples I put out. I believe their on the RSPB red list.

John
Nice Fieldfare shots, a lot better than the ones I managed at a local orchard yesterday. I was a long way from them, something like 25-30 metres, and had to crop in rather heavily... that's my excuse anyway.

Apple thief

edit: lots of birds out on the flood meadow this morning, took a vid. clip using my compact...



There were LOTS of Starlings, Redwings, Reed Buntings, Meadow Pipits and a few Fieldfares too.

Last edited by Fozzybear; 13-01-2010 at 15:57.
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Old 13-01-2010, 23:26   #994
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Am looking at moving up from a Sony Cybershot Digital Camera up to a Digital SLR shortly and have been blown away by a lot of the pics in this thread...

Keep up the awesome work guys and if I can work towards being half as good as you guys then I'll be impressed... lol

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Old 23-01-2010, 12:08   #995
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Some of the guys on here have got huuuge lenses but you don't necessarily need them - a good 70-300 (Canon and Nikon both make good ones with IS or VR stabilisation) can be good enough. The important thing is to not expect to buy an SLR and suddenly become Andy Rouse because that doesn't happen (well... unless you have an innate ability). However, if you're patient and prepared to put the time and effort in then it's surprising how quickly you can improve - the important thing is not to expect too much and then get depressed and give up, which I have come close to a few times!

A few snaps from my very dingily lit morning at Warley Place this week, shot at ISO3200 and with the aperture wide open on my 70-300VR for pretty much all of them I think. Not quality shots, far too noisy and they're mostly on feeders or have bad backgrounds/surroundings but ok for record shots, especially as some of the birds I'd not photographed (or seen!) before.

Coal Tit and Blue Tit:
Small and smaller

One Long-tailed Tit:
More fat please!

Two Long-tailed Tits:
Fatty Tits

Nuthatch in the trees (struggling with distance, low light and the confusion of branches here!):
Nuthatch!!

Coal Tit on the feeder (struggling with the speed of the bird and low light again):
Messy Coat Tit

Brown Rats in the undergrowth:
Cautious stare

It was a great morning, I saw quite a few Nuthatches and was my first ever sighting of them and also only the third time I've seen Coal Tits so I was well pleased! The cold and low light made photography extremely difficult. The feeder backgrounds were not really ideal and the fact that I had to open the aperture right up softened the shots to add to the detrimental effects of the high ISO and slow shutter speeds but at least I got to see Nuthatches and Coal Tits and get some shots of both (I only had one very blurry shot of a Coal Tit's bottom before!). The best shot I took there was probably this one of a Nuthatch in the car park (I think I did post this in the perp. thread already...). We moved the car close to the feeders and used it as a hide to watch the birds coming in to feed - Great Spotted Woodpecker, Nuthatches, a Robin, a Dunnock, Great Tits, Blue Tits, Coal Tits, Long-tailed Tits and Chaffinches. The Nuthatch was about four metres from us and was the one shot I took that actually came out with a good level of sharpness and detail in the feathers as it stood pretty still for a moment, just long enough to take a single shot:

Nuthatch-tastic!

Last edited by Fozzybear; 23-01-2010 at 12:11.
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Old 24-01-2010, 12:49   #996
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took camera to work this am to try, as usual had a Robin working with me, first time I've had time to sit down & use the Sigma 70-300 I bought last year, like the pose of the first pic but DOF is out and head not quite in focus, mental note for next time

robin

v pleased with the lens considering it was fairly cheap.

robin2

ring was put on by ringer friend.

Last edited by RCW; 24-01-2010 at 12:50.
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Old 24-01-2010, 16:04   #997
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Perhaps someone could critique these please. See where I could improve. These are the JPEGs straight out of the camera (I have the RAWs too). They haven't been cropped. All taken today in my back garden on a tripod using my D50 and Nikon 70-300 4-5.5G (which we've established before is not a great lens). Was hoping for better considering how close I was TBH.







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Old 25-01-2010, 08:02   #998
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You have to be really close to small birds to fill the frame on a 300mm so not surprising really. I'm not sure what advice to offer (especially not knowing settings and exposure) other than when you start shooting against the overcast sky you need to add exposure compesation (could vary from 0.5 to anything up to 2 stops) to compensate for the bright background. Also if you're shooting with that lens then don't shoot wide open at f/5.6 as that will make the shots really soft - try using aperture priority and set the aperture to f/8, but you'll have to adjust the ISO to keep the shutter speed up - at 300mm you ideally want at least 1/500s handheld and if tripod mounted although you can go a lot lower if you have a good tripod the movement of the birds will mean you should try to keep above 1/250 really depending on the subject - small birds moving a lot really need 1/400 or faster.

I went through the same thing - I took this with the same kit you have:

Iridescent starling

I had an awful lot of shots like that or a lot worse. You'll find that especially on dull days it's difficult to get good shots, you need a reasonable amount of light really to get the shutter speed up without pushing the ISO too high. Still worth shooting on days like this though as the practice is invaluable.
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Old 25-01-2010, 13:11   #999
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Thanks Fozzy. I had a better look at the RAW images last night. I might crop one or two of them and re-post with the EXIF, although there probably isn't much point. I think I was pretty much in line with your suggestions.

I was using the spot metering and bracketing +/- 0.7 stops. Soon found out how slowly the buffer clears! I was keeping the speed high (generally faster than 1/250th with a tripod) as the first ones I took were blurred due to the birds moving. I was moving ISO between 200 and 400 depending on whether the sun was out or not.

Thanks again.
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Old 25-01-2010, 14:18   #1000
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In that case I suppose all I can really say is keep at it and you'll get there.
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