Osprey

Mobile, AL Birding Workshop

This past weekend was our birding photography workshop in Mobile, AL.  It went really well!  We were hosted Friday night by Calagaz Photo in Mobile, where David and I both gave presentations then Calagaz offered some super specials to the 6o+ in attendance.

Saturday and Sunday morning we held our field sessions of the workshop.  Due to weather and blustery winds, the bird activity started out a bit slow.  However, thanks to the nesting osprey in the area, we got plenty of chances to photograph stationary birds and birds in flight.

We made some great new friends and had a great time!

On Friday morning, while we were out scouting locations for the workshop, we got the opportunity to photograph some osprey that were busy nest building.  

Aperture-priority, 1/2,000 sec, f/6.3, ISO 400, Compensation: +2/3, 600mm

This is the female osprey bringing in a few sticks to accommodate the nest.  She and her mate spent about 45 minutes non stop adding to the nest this particular morning.  She would leave and get a stick, and upon her return, he'd then leave and go get a stick.

I used my Nikon D500 and Tamron 150-600mm G2 lens all weekend attached to my Sirui monopod.  The Tamron G2 did so well at locking on focus and never losing it!

Osprey Tongue

On a day in The Viera Wetlands area down in Florida we got to spend time watching a few different osprey eat fish.  

This particular osprey we watched for over an hour.  He made pretty quick work of a fish he caught and brought back to this tree.  The other osprey we had watched on previous days would fly off the tree and take a bit of a swim to clean up right after eating his fish.  We kept waiting on this guy to do the same, but he never did.  He never left at all.  We were waiting and hoping for some flight shots, but instead after he ate his fish, he kept dancing around all uneasy like.  Then he would shake and then make this posture like he was trying to cough something up.

I thought it was hilarious.  It looks to me like hes screaming at something.  Or sticking his tongue out at the fish he didn't catch.

ISO 800, 600mm, F/6.3 @ 1/1000th second

Hover over the image to see the camera settings.  Click on the image to view it larger.

This image was made using my Sony A77 II and Tamron 150-600mm Lens.  All my gear was resting on my Sirui P-324S Monopod with L-20S Monopod Head.

Space Coast Birding Festival

I just returned home from Titusville, FL.  I was there visiting the Space Coast Birding Festival.  My teaching partner, David Akoubian, was teaching classes and workshops there so I tagged along for the chance to capture some birds with the camera.

Boy did we have several opportunities to do so!  All kinds of birds were in abundance...wading birds, birds of prey, shorebirds and we even took offshore boat trips to see some various gulls that can't be seen from land.

We had several opportunities to shoot on our own while we were there.  A few people had suggested we try this place known as Bio Lab Road.  I guess we went at the wrong time because we really didn't see much when we went down this road.  However an osprey did bring a fish to this dead snag in front of us and chowed down for a bit.

We spent several minutes photographing this osprey while he feasted.  He certainly didn't mind eating in front of us at all.

This is a pretty gnarly photo, but it shows the food chain at it's finest. 

 

ISO 640, 600mm, F/6.3 @ 1/1600th

Hover your mouse over the image to see the camera settings for this shot.

This image was made using my Sony A77II, Tamron 150-600mm Lens and Sirui P-324S Monopod.