Monday, January 4, 2010

More backyard wildlife photography

So I got a lot of comments about the sparrow in the last post here at Dakotagraph, so here we have some more backyard wildlife. Sometimes you don't have to go far to get fun photos.

I set the camera on a tripod just outside my back window with a remote trigger sensor attached and sprinkled some birdseed on a convenient snowbank. Then while sitting inside all warm and cozy, I pushed the remote button each time birds landed in approximately the right spot.

With my Nikon system, the remote only works with the camera set to manual focus. This meant that the birds didn't always find the spot that I had focused when I set up. In other words I shot a lot of pictures that were out of focus, not to mention the ones where the birds were only half in the frame, etc.

I was happy with these though -

While I was at it, several squirrels were enjoying the feeder I have for them. They were more tolerant of my presence outside than the birds and allowed me to shoot these pictures handheld from about 10 yards away.

If you love shooting wildlife and especially birds, you may want to take advantage of the annual Eagle Hike at Oahe Downstream Recreation Area north of Fort Pierre on Saturday, February 6. Yes, that's the same place I wrote about in my last post. Call Oahe Downstream for more info at 605-223-7722.


Larry said...

Chad, did you have your camera set for continuous shooting (taking multiple shots) or were you just snapping one shot at a time? I used to shoot continuous mode while shooting sporting events and one night one of the pros told me he tries to catch just the "one shot" and doesn't shoot continuous. What are your thoughts and techniques?

Chad Coppess said...

My thoughts are use whatever works best for you. If you can catch that perfect shot with one chance at it, great. However, I'm thinking that's as much ego talking as it is good technique.
For a sports shooter that means you better have a really fast reaction time and finger to capture a cool sequence of the receiver catching the football, the race car flipping over, or the base runner sliding into and knocking over the catcher. Don't know about you, but I'm not that fast.
For these bird shots I had the camera set on continuous, but my remote only allows one shot for each button push. So I had to attempt to be as fast as I could. When a bird flew in to land in the right spot I pushed the button continually as fast as I could until he folded his wings. If it would have allowed full continuous, I would have used it.