Showing posts with label Bird T-Shirts. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Bird T-Shirts. Show all posts

Monday, April 18, 2011

How to Photograph Hawks

How to Photograph Hawks.  A brave title.  Luck is involved.  Timing is involved, preparation of batteries and cards is assumed.  OK, the basics.  YOU MUST have a 400mm or better lens on a fast acting, fast focusing D-SLR.  Image Stabilization is important and "dual mode" stabilization may make the difference.  I use a Canon 70-200 with a 2X converter on Mode 2 setting.  Set on IS Mode 2 to account for the camera swing as you follow the bird.  Mode one assumes you are still and folllowing a still creature with a slow shutter speed. 1/500 is a minimum shutter speed.

Here the hawk, caught at 9:00 am in Staten Island, clutching a thouroughly executed prey bird is headed back to the nest in an arresting sight.

Go at least one stop overexposure compensation to account for the bright sky.  In Photoshop, will need to enhance the feather tone.   Point and Shoot users, sorry you are out of luck for flight, but don't give up hope.

Still, good shots are still possible.  STALKING skills beat shooting skills here.  Knowing bird behavior and a sense for their "spook distance" are critical for getting in range.  Change position.  This is likely the same bird above, hours after the catch above.  While shot with the same lens & Camera combo above, the bottom shot could easily have been taken with a long zoom EVIL (Electronic Viewfinder / Interchangeable Lens) Camera or a PowerShot SX30 IS Digital Camera with its long zoom.

Here is my Bird Gallery.

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