How the Tree swallow-ed ?

Outline of this post

  • Story behind 
  • Photo with photography techniques used
  • Notes or tips to be considered 


Story

Last week Saturday the 22nd, while my way back from Oak Hammock Marsh, I spotted a giant bald eagle feeding on its pray.  I puled the car a side, and in a moment I got ready with my camera, it flew far away. Considering the low light conditions, had decided to come back again to the location.

Exactly a week after I went again this time with Stephanie in search of Eagle. My bad luck, it wasn’t seen even after waiting long time, may be it went to another territory. But I had plenty of time, so we started hiking through various short- trails (Click) around and took various bird pictures including American coot, Geese, Mallard duck, Yellow headed Black bird, Red winged Black bird and Grackle (Click here for picture feed). Along with aforementioned birds we also spotted the the bird with most interesting  behavior called “Tree Swallow” this post is all about it.

Well, long story short, these birds follow certain pattern, may be for every 5 minutes they fly away from the tree, and comes back after some time and again after 5 minutes they fly away. They are very fast moving and hard to capture individual bird, so, I almost spent about 20-30 minutes to get the below picture of birds sitting on the tree branches, it almost look like leaves all along from far distance. The same picture was also became editor`s favorite in National Geographic Your shot (Click here for picture). Though I went for Eagle with open mind and curiosity of exploring things around could able to create one nice picture.

 

Photography technique

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Tree swallow birds on branches of dried tree
  1. Lighting: It was sunset and getting beautiful golden hour light to get that light on tree and in sky, I positioned myself in a way that my camera facing south.
  2. Camera & settings: I used Canon 7D-MarkII coupled with Tamron 150-600 lens. The focal length was 150mm at F8 with shutter speed 1/2500 and ISO-800. It was hand held shot in AI-Servo shooting mode. To capture warm colors, I had cloudy white balance setting in evaluative metering mode.
  3. Post production: Picture was captured in RAW and processed in Light room with basic adjustment of White-Black balance, shadow and highlight. This is original composition picture was not cropped.

Notes or Tips

  • In my experience, when you are in field always look around for nice moments
  • Consider light and its angle before you take picture
  • Always check your camera setting before you start shooting (specially WB and ISO)
  • Play with white balance and always get multiple pictures, to make sure one would have better focus among
  • Try to use tripod for better quality pictures.

 

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Thank you
Vijaya

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