Saturday, November 5, 2016

Trying to expose an Osprey well

With the heavens virtually cloudless earlier today, the first time I've seen a blue sky in weeks, it would have been sacrilegious for a birdnut like me not to go birding at the wetlands of nearby Sto. Tomas, a mere 30-minute drive away.

I arrived at the birding site at around 2:30 pm, about three hours before sunset, and roughly an hour before light starts to turn golden. There wasn't a single tree nor any man-made shade at the spot I chose to wait for birds in flight. With just a cap protecting my featherless head, the rest of my exposed skin was slowly baked past medium-well..... such is the necessary consequence of shooting under cloudless skies. 

But this time the reward is worth the toasting - just past 4:00 pm, an Osprey flew very close to my position. I let go of a long burst and the combo managed to capture over two dozen frames, almost all in good focus.

However, this raptor's contrasting dark and white plumage was a nightmare to expose well, even in soft golden light. The bird itself was flying under side lighting, and its face was shaded each time the wings were in downstroke. During upstroke, the white underwing was prone to overexposure. Fortunately, my manual exposure settings were just right to hold in the highlights. I just recovered some details in the shadows during post process.

To see more details, please view the 1500 x 1000 version.
 
_____


Osprey (Pandion haliaetus, migrant)

Habitat - Associated with water both along coast and inland. 


Shooting Info - Sto. Tomas, La Union, Philippines, November 5, 2016, EOS 7D MII + EF 400 DO IS II + EF 1.4x TC III,
560 mm, f/6.3, 1/2000 sec, ISO 320, manual exposure in available light, hand held, near full frame resized to 800 x 533.



1 comment:

Anonymous said...

excellent!really worth the wait:-)

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