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An Incredible Opportunity~Wild Raptor

Discussion in 'Birds' started by jfenton, Dec 5, 2005.

  1. jfenton


    Jan 26, 2005
    Haverhill, MA
    All shots with a D2X~500AFSII and TC14EII.

    I consider myself to have been truly blessed today.

    At lunchtime, I went to see if my buddy the red tailed hawk was on his usual perch and just as I got out of the car, he flew...and landed nearby!

    First he landed and I caught him just as he touched down...after than he settled for a moment:

    NIKON D2X    ---    700mm    f/8.0    1/800s    ISO 500

    NIKON D2X    ---    700mm    f/8.0    1/800s    ISO 500

    This bird was not 40 feet from me and he and I stared at one another for a few minutes until I guess he decided I was safe!

    NIKON D2X    ---    700mm    f/8.0    1/800s    ISO 500

    All of a sudden he jumped up and started digging at the snow...

    NIKON D2X    ---    700mm    f/8.0    1/800s    ISO 500

    Then he settled back down for a moment but his feet were nervous as if he was feeling for worms, much like a robin would do on my lawn...

    NIKON D2X    ---    700mm    f/8.0    1/750s    ISO 400

    All of a sudden he was digging furiously, kicking snow and bits of weeds up...

    NIKON D2X    ---    700mm    f/8.0    1/800s    ISO 400

    NIKON D2X    ---    700mm    f/8.0    1/750s    ISO 400

    Evidently unsuccessful in attempting to catch whatever creature he had sensed, he flew to a nearby post and we watched one another for a few moments until he flew right over my right shoulder, not 5 feet from me (I thought he was coming after me!) and then disappeared. He was actually to close to even attempt a flight shot, but to be honest...I was to in awe / shock to have been able to capture this beautiful bird at this range to have even attempted a flight shot.

  2. Jim, what a beautiful sereis of a beautiful bird.
  3. Hey Jim,

    You are truly blessed, my friend! You sure do know how to find those birds. The images look like paintings worthy of hanging anywhere. Outstanding work as usual.

    Looks like you're feeling a little better.

    Thanks for sharing!
  4. jfenton


    Jan 26, 2005
    Haverhill, MA
    Hi Tom

    You're correct.....Peregrines yesterday and then this bird today on my lunch break...definetly truly blessed :) 

  5. Flew


    Jan 25, 2005
    OK Jim, I'm sitting here trying to convince myself that these shots that you get are just plain luck, and that you aren't really as good as these shots indicate....and it ain't workin'. :mad: 

    Absolutely awesome series. :wink:
  6. Excellent


    These shots are excellent. You are so lucky to be able to get close to the birds. Thank you for sharing.
  7. You owe him some nice juicy roadkill the next time you're out there, these are stunning! That first one is a very regal shot! You were very lucky to have him posing like this and he was very lucky to have such a gifted photog shooting him!
  8. jfenton


    Jan 26, 2005
    Haverhill, MA

    There was alot of luck involved...and some teachings from RR while I tried to keep my cool and simply shoot :) 
  9. cknight


    May 2, 2005
    Madison, AL
    Great sequence Jim:Shocked: . Looks like something out of a National Geographic spread.
  10. jfenton


    Jan 26, 2005
    Haverhill, MA
    Hi Sandi..

    I guess I need to get some white mice or something and see if I can't get him to eat out of my hand :) 
  11. :eek:  Okay, that's it. I'm coming over to check this out :biggrin:

    What an incredible experience. So, what have you planned for tomorrow?
  12. Ken-L

    Ken-L Guest

  13. jfenton


    Jan 26, 2005
    Haverhill, MA
    Hi Rory

    I think I should stay home tomorrow!

    Peregrines yesterday...a superb red tail today...my luck has got to be dwindling :) 
  14. Absolutely beautiful shots Jim. The whole series is great but if I had to pick two out of the bunch as my favorites it would be the first one and the next to last one. :smile:
  15. Holy frick batman, what a heck of a series bud. The second last one is a beaut! Some guys have all the luck. Teaches the rest of us, like anything, if your not out there and in the game, it wont come to you!!! Man I can just imagine what a print would look like, put these to shame if that can be done ;-)
  16. bfjr

    bfjr Guest

    Beautiful Work, Beautiful Bird
    It's all good
    Great series, so glad you were there and caught him !!
  17. I see you changes your EV from +.33 to 0 part way through the series. What prompted you to change?
  18. jfenton


    Jan 26, 2005
    Haverhill, MA

    As I was shooting, it just seemed to my eye that there was a bit lower luminosity than I originally estimated, plus I wanted to be doubly sure that I didn't blow any highlights on the underside of the bird.

    It was one of those on the fly things that is second nature..and sometimes I get it right and sometimes I don't!

    Fortunately these shots were pretty much perfectly exposed.
  19. Oh the color, the exposure the subject etc etc etc!

    Amazing shots Jim, what else is there to say!
  20. Jim, I agree with Frank. You deserved these shots. You get out and have the knowledge to make it happen when the moment arrives. Most of us, myself included could never come up with shots like that. These are really special and this is what makes me want to keep getting better. Thanks so much for sharing these. You sure had a great lunch hour.
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