Birding using Olympus E-M1 MKII

Joined
Mar 11, 2012
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1,565
Location
Melbourne - Australia
I went for a wander around a local flora and fauna reserve this morning. While I would usually use a Nikon system for birding, I decided to take the Olympus instead as I was checking out some native orchids while I was there, and carrying two Olympus systems is much lighter than the one Nikon. I've used the Olympus several times, and for the most part it does okay. Today, I really found how difficult the Olympus EVF is for finding birds in dense scrub. It's one thing I'd not noticed previously as the majority of the birds I'd photographed with the Olympus were more in the open. It was really hard to not only find the bird when it was in dense scrub, but focusing on the bird was another issue. I realise the Nikon would also struggle focusing in a number of situations, but I feel trying to find the out of focus subject using an EVF makes the whole process a little more difficult. I must try one of the Z bodies one day and see how the EVF compares for these difficult shots.

There weren't too many birds around today as there were a lot of people out exercising, but there were plenty of orchids.

One of the birds from today using the Panasonic 100-400mm lens

Golden Whistler

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Taken with the Olympus 60mm macro

Fringed Helmet Orchid (Corybas fimbriatus)

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Joined
May 5, 2005
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SW Virginia
A very interesting blossom. How large is it?

Do you ever use a circular polarizer to cut specular reflections from blossoms? I know it doesn't do much for curved surfaces, but sometimes it helps a bit.
 
Joined
Mar 11, 2012
Messages
1,565
Location
Melbourne - Australia
those look great Richard


Thank you Randy. I took the Nikon D500 out this morning, and definitely much easier to find birds when there is alot of branches and leaves around them. I'm yet to try one of the Z bodies, however, the EVF on the Olympus is not too good IMO for this type of photography.
 
Joined
Mar 11, 2012
Messages
1,565
Location
Melbourne - Australia
A very interesting blossom. How large is it?

Do you ever use a circular polarizer to cut specular reflections from blossoms? I know it doesn't do much for curved surfaces, but sometimes it helps a bit.

If you placed a dime on the flower, it would cover the flower and most of the leaf. I hope to be out later next week photographing some other varieties of these helmet orchids, I'll try to remember to use some coins for sizing.

These Pelican Orchids are now in flower, this was taken last season with a coin as a reference.
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These Veined Helmet Orchids are another one which is also in flower. This is from last season
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There are two other varieties we get locally, but they are probably a month away from flowering.

These are both from last season also.


They are the Mountain Helmet Orchid

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And Slaty Helmet Orchid
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We do get other varieties of these Helmet orchids in our State, but I'd need time (a bit hard until I retire) to travel to locate them.



I do have a couple of CPL filters, but I've not tried them with native orchids.

The first image was a quick shot without too much consideration. The rest in the batch I ensured the sun wasn't illuminating the flower or leaf.

Here is another from the outing

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Joined
Mar 11, 2012
Messages
1,565
Location
Melbourne - Australia
A few from this morning using a D500, I would've struggled to get these using the EVF on the Olympus. I find it difficult to find the subject when the image is out of focus, let alone identify the subject and focus on it. There is nothing wrong with the AF of the Olympus.


#1 Little Wattlebird
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#2 Grey Fantail
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#3 White-browed Scrubwren
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