228/365 Night Heron Nycticorax nycticorax


Using a prime lens will always have its advantages and disadvantages with photography.  Sharpness, focus speed and lens quality is a great factor to have but with closer subjects focal length and minimum focussing distances comes in to play.  This was the case with this juvenile Night Heron.

This individual came within the minimum 4.5m focussing distance of the 500mm f/4 lens I was using.  Attaching a 25mm extension tube (giving me 25% closer focus), this brought the subject back in focus again.  The Night Heron was still huge in the frame but I wasn’t able to zoom out or move further back.  Keeping the focussing point over the eye and creating the best composition was all I could do in this situation.  This is one of the images I achieved.

Night Heron, Nycticorax nycticorax, Hungary, June, 2014.
Canon 5D3 with Canon 500mm f/4 L IS lens with Canon 25mm extension tube.

 

228/365 Night Heron

 

 

223/365 Spoonbill Platalea leucorodia


The lighting was difficult to control on this one but checking the histogram kept me from burning out the highlights on the setting sun through the white feathers of this Spoonbill.

Spoonbill, Platalea leucorodia, Hungary, May, 2013.

Canon 5D Mark III with Canon 500mm f/4 L IS lens and Canon 1.4x converter.

223/365 Spoonbill

222/365 Grey Heron Ardea cinerea


I know I’ve got a big appetite but this fish even made me feel full.  Its amazing the size of the fish that these Grey Herons can swallow.

Grey Heron, Ardea cinerea, Hungary, May, 2014.
Canon 5DIII with Canon 500mm f/4 L IS lens.

222/365 Grey Heron

221/365 Little Egret


Following on from the previous post, here is another Little Egret but taken later during the day.  It shows an adult Little Egret having a good shake after eating a fish and showing off its beautiful breeding plumage.

Little Egret, Egretta garzetta, Hungary, May, 2014.
Canon 5DIII with Canon 500mm f/4 L IS lens.

221/365 Little Egret

220/365 Little Egret


Back for a morning session in the hide yesterday and came away with some nice images.  This image of a Little Egret was taken just as the sun was coming up, illuminating the bird whilst the background was still in shadow.

Little Egret, Egretta garzetta, Hungary, May, 2014.
Canon 5DIII with Canon 500mm f/4 L IS lens.

220/365 Little Egret

218/365 Night Heron


I’m back over in Hungary and this time trying out a new hide.  Along with Great White Egret,  Grey Heron and Hooded Crow, this Night Heron was one of the first visitors.  It’s amazing that this breeding adult managed to swallow this carp.  It went down the hatch though!

Black-crowned Night Heron, Nycticorax nycticorax, Hungary, April, 2014.

Night Heron

186/365 Nightjar Caprimulgus europaeus


I was sitting in a hide waiting for a species of bird that, in the end, never turned up! Anyway, in the distance I could hear a nightjar churring away even though it was 2 hours before sunset! As you can imagine I was very intrigued to find out where this individual was but decided to sit in the hide waiting for my target subject.  What happened next was pretty incredible.. I heard the nightjar churring again so tried to locate the position of the calling so I could go out and try and find it later that evening.  Next thing, the Nightjar came flying over the trees in front of me and landed in a pine tree right opposite the hide.  I couldn’t believe my luck!! 😉 I didn’t leave the hide until I knew my target species wasn’t going to arrive.  I watched the nightjar for about 45 minutes from the hide through live view on the camera. It was mesmerising to see such a hard to find bird just resting completely relaxed on the branch right in front of me.  I continued to watch it as it yawned, and waddled up and down the branch to find the best position for its camouflage to work.  With the last rays of light just tipping the trees behind the hide, I knew that my target species wasn’t going to arrive this late so took the opportunity to photograph the nightjar instead.  And here’s one of the images…  a beautiful bird and superb camouflage… a truly memorable evening out in the field.

Whats your best memory?

Nightjar, Caprimulgus europaeus, Hungary, June, 2013
Canon 5D mk3 with Canon 500mm f/4 L IS and 1.4x III converter, 1/100sec at f/5.6 ISO 2000.

186/365 Nightjar Caprimulgus europaeus