On Golden (Duck) Pond....;-)

Discussion in 'Birds' started by Flew, Sep 3, 2005.

  1. Flew


    Jan 25, 2005
    I went to the pond after work yesterday evening and caught some decent late afternoon Mallard shots with the D2h / 300 2.8. I also used the 1.4 TC. The light was just about perfect. Here are several examples.

    Some solitary flyers:





    And some groups:


    Hope that you enjoy. :smile:
  2. Gale


    Jan 26, 2005
    Viera Fl
    Those are excellent Frank.

    Boy you are getting this down to a science. Job well done.
  3. ?Beautiful lighting i like the formation shots thebest, these suckers are just so fast, you will have no problme nailing the big birdies now
  4. Gordon Large

    Gordon Large Guest

    Very nice, Frank. Do you ever screw up a flight shot? I'm getting better but you still provide inspiration.

    BTW - Got a schedule for Merritt III yet? After the hurricane season. I am having a hard time even comprehending Katrina.... Do you never if any Cafe members were directly affected?

  5. HarryB


    Jan 28, 2005
    Viera, Florida
    Frank you are the MAN when it comes to BIFs.
  6. PJohnP


    Feb 5, 2005

    You're just singing a great mallardy there, guy !

    <ducking> :Ouch: :Devil: :Ouch:

    John P.
  7. Hi Frank, if you put those first six in a stack and then flipped them fast it would look like they were flying for sure. Excellent images all but I think I like the last one the best. Perhaps it's the excellent light.
  8. Frank you make it look easy and I know how hard it is to get these shots. I tried a few today but the light was pretty bad and I could not get a fast enough shutter speed. How fast a shutter speed do you need to freeze the wings? Beautiful images as always.
  9. Flew


    Jan 25, 2005
    Thanks again everyone for the very kind words.

    James, for Mallards, you need to be at a minimum of 1/640th of a second to keep things from looking blurred. I certainly understand the problem you are having though. In my experience, shooting flying birds is primarily an exercise in figuring out how to get enough shutter speed, and a decent aperture, to get a usable shot. I shoot in manual, so that I can control both of these settings, and vary the shutter between about 1/640th and 1/800th. I usually set the aperture between f5.0 and f8.0 (f8.0 is better, but you can't always get that with available light).

    When I can't get a good exposure while achieving these values, I just bump up the ISO. I try to stay below ISO 400. Anything higher with the D2H results in noticeable noise in the dark areas of the image.
  10. bfjr

    bfjr Guest

    Best ducks in flight I've ever seen!!!
  11. Flew


    Jan 25, 2005
    Thanks Ben. :biggrin:
  12. You are the Mallard King!!! Those little duckies are fast, you best go back after the hummers, these are no challenge for the King :rolleyes:
    Great series Frank, kudos my friend!
  13. The last one is so beautiful, the color, contrast, sharpness and composition are first rate. Which AF-Area mode did you use for the pictures, I never yet took a picture of a flying bird, would the VR70-200 be long enough for those kind of pictures or is it to short?
  14. Flew


    Jan 25, 2005
    Thanks Keith. Mostly, I'm persistent. :smile:

    Gilles, most of the time I shoot in the single center sensor AF-C mode, with lock-on turned on. These shots were shot using the group dynamic area mode. As for the 70-200VR, I have one and know several others that do also. While it is certainly possible to get good bird shots with this lens, most feel that it is a tad on the short side for most bird shooting applications. I did use mine at the rookery in Florida a couple of months ago because the birds are just so close there, but that is not usually the case.
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