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Skagit - Short-eared Owl Part Deux

Discussion in 'Birds' started by Retief, Nov 28, 2005.

  1. You should all have seen Jim's post on today's excursion as well. Here is the bird, full-frame, from my D2H with 500mm plus TC-14E to give an idea of how far away these birds were.


    Here is a similar crop to Jim's..


    And is an example of just what the extra MP's of the D2X will buy you. If I crop any further, the moss just looks even more like blotches. Given that we deal with these distances often, that d200 10MP is looking might good to me :wink:

    Along with the owl's we had a couple of Northern Harriers flying about. Here is a Harrier on the top with an Owl on the bottom, doing a rather good job of ignoring each other.


    And lastly, Here's Lookin' at YOU Kid...


    Or, for those from the UK, It's MY turn in the Round-About :wink:
  2. Bill...you are so lucky to get a picture of an owl. They are one of my favorite birds aside from the Swans and Egrets. So very nice pictures of the owl.
  3. Bill Great stuff I am so envious owls are on the top of my list to capture this winter, keep the shots comign please.
  4. Flew


    Jan 25, 2005
    Nice set Bill. I'd love to get just a sight of an Owl in the wild. Maybe someday. :rolleyes: 
  5. Thanks, Melissa. We are very lucky to have this bird around, and so visible during the day. I wish this was one of those "guaranteed to find" birds, but we looked all last season and never spotted one. You just never know, so you grab them when you can. The Swans are so much more predictable for us.
  6. Thanks, Mike, not sure I have many more from yesterday that I am thrilled with. Shooting beside Jim, with his D2X, I know see where those extra MP's really can help, as you can see in the first pair of images here with the blotchy moss on the log, lack of detail.

    The way we have found these spots, as well as most, is by calling our local Audobon Society as well as the Parks and Recreation folks. That is how we found the Swan Rookery, about 20 minutes from Jim and I, as well as the place Jim shot that gorgeous Kingfisher the other day, right behind the waste treatment plant :wink:

    That and talking to everyone we see when we get to one of these spots, that is how we found the owls on Saturday. Went to one place where the Snowy had been seen to find nothing but a couple of hunters. Spoke with a Bird Watcher who gave us directions to the place we ended up and, Bingo, birds and another place to check each time we go.

    Good luck, and good binoculars, really help as well :smile:
  7. Now you folks know how I felt about that danged Osprey last spring :biggrin: Kept seeing all of those superb shots from you folks, and all I could do was to look at pictures, and keep hearing about where they are in our neck of the woods. Then once I did find them, BINGO, off to the races, although the Osprey are actually much more predicatble than these owls. Check with the Audobon and Bird folks in your area, there must be something thereabouts, unless you have scared them all away :smile:
  8. Bill, great shots. I hope to find an Owl on one of the trips up north. You get some amazing results at that high ISO. The flight shot is very good.

  9. Bill - you lucky dog - way to go!
  10. I can't remember who it was who suggested the Auto-ISO setting on the D2H but I really like it, and it makes sense for getting the most correct exposure, which helps a lot at higher ISO's. I also find it very helpful as we often have to track birds from the ground into the sky, and that is certainly a different exposure. I have a couple of sequences where the first shot, ground level, is ISO 1500 and the last, in the sky, is at ISO 200.

    With luck next time we get together we can find a few of these, I'd like to shoot them again, and again, and then a few more times. I really screwed up and missed what would have been super shots of two of them making passes at each other in the air.

    Thanks a bunch,
  11. Thanks, Rory.

    I have been vacillating on the whole D2X upgrade issue since last summer, and I am seeing more and more where those extra MP's really help for fine detail. It is going to be interesting to see what I think when the D200 arrives next month and I test side-by-side with my D2H. If the focus is as good as I am hearing, and 5fps is enough, I see a pair of these in my hands come spring-time, or earlier.....
  12. 5 FPS works for me. In more than 10,000 actuations I have yet to shoot my D2X at 8FPS.
  13. HarryB


    Jan 28, 2005
    Viera, Florida
    Excellent shots Bill. I love owl shots. I've only been able to shoot one owl in the wild down here so far.

    Now you have me thinking D2X. :frown:
  14. That is very good to know, thanks Rory. This makes my decision to wait for the D200 even better, in my opinion. The last test will be AF and tracking, and if the reports I am reading are correct I think this is going to be a very good move for me.
  15. Thanks, Harry. These were all with the D2H, I think I'm going to really like it when my D200 arrives, that will give me the extra resolution that I don't have now. I like the upgrade cost much better as well :wink:
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