Thursday, July 30, 2015

Bued River in golden light

Noticing the interesting formation of clouds over Bued River* late this afternoon, I took a walk along its bank with my 5D MIII and EF 16-35 f4 L IS in hand. I was hoping that the last golden rays of the setting sun would somehow find a way to pierce through a gap in the clouds and illuminate the environment.
 
Sure enough, at about 6:05 pm, a soft burst of golden photons managed to shine through, and a good photo opportunity materialized. I didn't bring my tripod with me, as such would slow me down while trekking over the slippery boulders along the bank.  I had to shoot this one hand held at a shutter speed of 1/6 sec - slow enough to smoothen the flowing water and render the turbulence with a painterly touch, yet fast enough to have a chance of freezing the static elements in the frame.
 
While holding the camera just above the water surface, I framed the scene using Live View and the display grid. It was pure luck that I got a shot with a level horizon, without the need to do some corrective rotation in post process. I find it amazing too that camera shake was tamed well by the lens's Image Stabilizer (IS) system - tiny details are sharp across the frame even at actual pixel view (aka 100% crop).

 
*Bued River originates from the city of Baguio and winds down towards the South China Sea, in the process separating the provinces of La Union and Pangasinan with a natural boundary.

Shooting info - Bued River, Rosario, La Union, Philippines, July 30, 2015, Canon 5D MIII + EF 16-35 f/4 L IS, 16 mm, f/11, ISO 100, 1/6 sec,
manual exposure in available light, hand held/IS engaged, AWB, uncropped full frame resized to 1575 x 1050 pixels.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Hungry White-eyes after Typhoon "Egay"

After more than 24 hours of strong winds and torrential rains brought by Typhoon "Egay" (international name - Linfa ), Lowland White-eyes converged like starving bees at a fruiting tree in my mother's backyard at Bacnotan, La Union. The tiny birds feasted like there's no tomorrow on whatever berry-like fruits that survived the onslaught of the howler.
 
I braved the light rains and wind of the typhoon's tail-end and enjoyed a prolonged shooting session. I had to wrap my birding combo in a plastic sheet to protect it from moisture. The overcast lighting made exposures easier to tame.
 
Again, the 400 2.8 IS + 2x TC II's IQ and AF accuracy didn't disappoint (the DOF is super thin at 800 mm and 3 - 5 meters shooting distance).

__________
 
Lowland White-eye (Zosterops meyeni, a near Philippine endemic)

Habitat - Second growth, scrub and gardens. 
 
Shooting info - Bacnotan, La Union, Philippines, July 6, 2015, Canon 5D MIII + 400 2.8 IS + Canon 2x TC II, 800 mm,
f/5.6, ISO 1600, 1/250 sec, 475B/516 support, manual exposure in available light, near full frame resized to 800 x 533.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Not the prettiest bird in our islands

This bird is perhaps not the best looking feathered creature in our islands, but it certainly has one of the most impressive avian eyes I've seen (colored blood red, according to the Kennedy Guide). It is a common noisy resident, and can be found in many areas in the lowlands. Its total length is about 8 inches. The adult is glossy black, while the immature (featured here) has a more interesting range of colors.

__________
 
Asian Glossy Starling (Aplonis panayensis, sub-adult)

Habitat - Lowlands from second growth to downtown in cities. 
 
 
Shooting info - Bacnotan, La Union, Philippines, June 28, 2015, Canon 5D MIII + 400 2.8 IS + Canon 2x TC II, 800 mm,
f/5.6, ISO 1250, 1/500 sec, 475B/516 support, manual exposure in available light, near full frame resized to 800 x 533.

Monday, June 29, 2015

Lowland White-eyes in La Union

With the recent sale of my birding workhorse (500 f4 L IS), my remaining big white - the heavy 400 2.8 IS - gets used more often. With a 2x TC II and an MFD of 3.0 meters, the magnification of this 800 mm combo is nothing short of amazing. These images were all captured within a shooting distance of 3.0 - 5.0 meters, allowing me to fill the frame even when the bird's total length is just around four inches.
 
AF speed with a 2x TC II slows down, but still fast enough to capture these tiny, active birds. IQ remains very decent even when shot wide open.
 
__________
 
Lowland White-eye (Zosterops meyeni, a near Philippine endemic)

Habitat - Second growth, scrub and gardens. 


Shooting info - Bacnotan, La Union, Philippines, June 29, 2015, Canon 5D MIII + 400 2.8 IS + Canon 2x TC II, 800 mm,
 f/5.6, ISO 1600, 1/200 sec, 475B/516 support, manual exposure in available light, near full frame resized to 800 x 533.


Shooting info - Bacnotan, La Union, Philippines, June 29, 2015, Canon 5D MIII + 400 2.8 IS + Canon 2x TC II, 800 mm,
f/5.6, ISO 2500, 1/250 sec, 475B/516 support, manual exposure in available light, major crop resized to 800 x 533.
 
 
Shooting info - Bacnotan, La Union, Philippines, June 29, 2015, Canon 5D MIII + 400 2.8 IS + Canon 2x TC II, 800 mm,
f/5.6, ISO 320, 1/250 sec, 475B/516 support, manual exposure in available light (pushed 1.8 stops in PP), near full frame resized to 800 x 533.
1500 x 1000 version


Shooting info - Bacnotan, La Union, Philippines, June 29, 2015, Canon 5D MIII + 400 2.8 IS + Canon 2x TC II, 800 mm,
f/5.6, ISO 3200, 1/200 sec, 475B/516 support, manual exposure in available light, near full frame resized to 800 x 533.
1500 x 1000 version


Shooting info - Bacnotan, La Union, Philippines, June 28, 2015, Canon 5D MIII + 400 2.8 IS + Canon 2x TC II,  800 mm,
f/5.6, ISO 640, 1/640 sec, 475B/516 support, manual exposure in available light, near full frame resized to 800 x 533.
1500 x 1000 version

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Startling Starling in Flight

I've been trying for some time now to get these fast noise-makers in flight, but they often fly very low, always presenting a terrestrial background. Such busy BG coupled with the all-black plumage of the adult bird make it a very tough AF job even for the 5D MIII.

Well, I got lucky this morning when one young fellow flew above the skyline. The striped plumage of the youngster  over a featureless BG rendered it an easier target for my favorite BIF gear to lock on.
 
__________
 
Asian Glossy Starling (Aplonis panayensis, resident, sub-adult)

Habitat - Lowlands from second growth to downtown in cities. 
 
Shooting info - Bued River, Rosario, La Union, Philippines, May 27, 2015, Canon 5D MIII + 400 5.6L,
f/5.6, ISO 640, 1/2500 sec, hand held, manual exposure in available light, major crop.

Labels

16-35 f4 L IS (1) 5D MIII (1) 7d m2 (1) 7d mark ii (1) 7d mii (1) 7d2 (1) Acridotheres cristatellus (1) Acrocephalus stentoreus (1) action photography (1) Aethopyga bella (1) Aethopyga flagrans (1) Alcedo atthis (1) Alcedo cyanopecta (1) Amaurornis olivaceus (1) Amaurornis phoenicurus (1) Amur Falcon (1) Anas clypeata (1) Anas luzonica (1) Anser serrirostris (1) Anthus rufulus (1) Aplonis panayensis (2) Arachnothera clarae (1) Ardea cinerea (1) Ardea purpurea (1) Ardeola bacchus (1) Ardeola speciosa (1) Asian Glossy Starling (2) astro (6) Australasian Grass-Owl (1) Barn Swallow (2) Barred Rail (1) bee (2) bird video (38) birding places (4) birds in flight (37) Black Bittern (1) Black-chinned Fruit-dove (1) Black-crowned Night-Heron (1) Black-Headed Gull (1) Black-winged Stilt (2) Blue-headed Fantail (1) Blue-naped Parrot (1) Blue-tailed Bee-eater (1) Bolbopsittacus lunulatus (1) Brahminy Kite (2) Brown Hawk-Owl (1) Brown Shrike (2) Bubulcus ibis (1) Buceros hydrocorax (1) Butorides striatus (1) canon workshop (1) Caprimulgus manillensis (1) Cattle Egret (1) Centropus viridis (1) Charadrius dubius (1) Chinese Egret (1) Chinese Pond-Heron (1) Chlidonias hybridus (3) Cinnamon Bittern (1) Circus spilonotus (1) Cisticola juncidis (1) Clamorous Reed-Warbler (1) Coleto (1) Collared Kingfisher (3) Collocalia troglodytes (1) Common Kingfisher (1) Crested Myna (1) Dendrocopos maculatus (1) Dicaeum australe (1) Dicaeum pygmaeum (1) Ducula aenea (1) Dupetor flavicollis (1) Eastern Marsh-Harrier (1) Egretta alba (1) Egretta eulophotes (1) Egretta garzetta (1) Elegant Tit (1) endemic birds (31) Eurasian Tree Sparrow (1) Falco amurensis (1) Falco peregrinus (1) Flaming Sunbird (1) Gallirallus torquatus (1) Gerygone sulphurea (1) Golden-bellied Flyeater (1) grasshopper (1) Great Egret (1) Greater Sand-Plover (1) Green Imperial-Pigeon (1) Grey Heron (1) Grey Wagtail (1) Grey-tailed Tattler (1) Guaiabero (1) Halcyon smyrnensis (1) Haliastur indus (2) Handsome Sunbird (1) haradrius leschenaultii (1) Heteroscelus brevipes (1) Himantopus himantopus (2) Hirundo rustica (2) Hoopoe (1) Hydrophasianus chirurgus (1) Indigo-banded Kingfisher (1) Ixobrychus cinnamomeus (1) Ixobrychus sinensis (1) Java Sparrow (1) Javan Pond-Heron (1) la union (3) Lanius cristatus (2) Lanius schach (1) Lanius validirostris (1) Larus ridibundus (1) Larus saundersi (1) liquidstone (1) Little Egret (1) Little Heron (1) Little Ringed-Plover (1) Lonchura punctulata (1) Long-tailed Shrike (1) Lowland White-eye (4) Luzon Hornbill (1) macro (5) Macropygia tenuirostris (1) Marsh Sandpiper (1) Merops philippinus (1) Microhierax erythrogenys (1) migratory birds (32) Motacilla cinerea (1) Mountain Shrike (1) Mountain White-eye (1) Naked-faced Spiderhunter (1) Ninox scutulata (1) Northern Shoveler (1) Nycticorax nycticorax (1) Oriental Honeybuzzard (2) Osprey (2) Padda oryzivora (1) Paddyfield Pipit (1) Pandion haliaetus (2) Parus elegans (1) Parus semilarvatus (1) Passer montanus (1) Penelopides manillae (1) Peregrine Falcon (1) Pernis ptilorhynchus (1) Pernis ptilorhynchus philippensis (1) Phaenicophaeus superciliosus (1) Pheasant-Tailed Jacana (1) Philippine Coucal (1) Philippine Cuckoo-Dove (1) Philippine Duck (1) Philippine Falconet (1) Philippine Nightjar (1) Philippine Pygmy Woodpecker (1) Philippine Serpent-Eagle (1) Philippine Woodpecker (1) Pied Bushchat (1) Pied Fantail (1) Plain Bush-Hen (1) Porphyrio porphyrio (1) Ptilinopus leclancheri (1) Purple Heron (1) Purple Swamphen (1) Pycnonotus goiavier (2) Pygmy Flowerpecker (1) Pygmy Swiftlet (1) Red Turtle-Dove (1) Red-crested Malkoha (1) Red-keeled Flowerpecker (1) resident birds (42) Rhabdornis mystacalis (1) Rhipidura cyaniceps (1) Rhipidura javanica (1) Richard's Pipit (1) romy ocon (1) Rufous Hornbill (1) Sarcops calvus (1) Saunders's Gull (1) Saxicola caprata (1) Saxicola maurus (1) Scaly-Breasted Munia (1) Siberian Stonechat (1) spider (1) Spilornis holospilus (1) Spotted Dove (1) Streptopelia chinensis (1) Streptopelia tranquebarica (1) Stripe-headed Rhabdornis (1) surfing (3) Tanygnathus lucionensis (1) telephoto (1) Todiramphus chloris (3) Tringa stagnatilis (1) Tundra Bean Goose (1) Tyto longimembris (1) Upupa epops (1) video (1) Whiskered Tern (3) White-breasted Waterhen (1) White-fronted Tit (1) White-throated Kingfisher (1) Yellow Bittern (1) Yellow-vented Bulbul (2) Zitting Cisticola (1) Zosterops meyeni (4) Zosterops montanus (1)