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Bird Photography 2020 - Replacing the previous Bird topic of 2019.  Rate Topic 
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Posted by Graham Whistler: Fri Jan 31st, 2020 08:45 1st Post
JK said last bird topic is getting too large so lets start a new one for 2020. Come on members lets see some more super bird photography.

Last edited on Fri Jan 31st, 2020 08:47 by Graham Whistler



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Posted by Graham Whistler: Fri Jan 31st, 2020 08:53 2nd Post
Eric has been working on my Little Owls from the old Bird topic so here is his skilled Photoshopping!
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Posted by Eric: Fri Jan 31st, 2020 12:13 3rd Post
Not sure it’s that good, there are several errors I couldn’t be bothered to correct. 😂 

But as I said in my email to you Graham...it poses an interesting conundrum when it comes to wildlife photography. Where do you draw the line with regard to a natural shot?

If a free flying bird lands on a water bath in your garden...is it ‘wrong’ to remove the concrete bath for a branch to make it more natural?

We put food out to attract birds, then try to photograph them on a posing stick next to the food. Isn’t that bending nature itself?


I personally feel that it’s the finished photograph that matters, not how it was achieved. 

Take for example Barrie....




Barrie was tethered to a block with Jessies in an open grass area with other hawks waiting for his turn at the free flying display. Crowds of people in the background, other birds, mowed grass etc. So I removed the Jessie’s, cropped the post and replaced the background with a barn. I liked the final image because I had introduced BACK a more natural setting. Is that ‘wrong’?


In this instance I was on the marsh in Norfolk trying to photograph spoonbills. You can see one in the background. Couldn’t hope to get closer and not having massive lenses back then it was a nothing image. But on visiting a bird reserve with walk through aviary I was fortunate enough to have a spoonbill fly across in front of me. So the caged background was edited out and the bird superimposed over my marsh image. Was that wrong?







Well it was actually wrong in one way....Mike (my birding expert) pointed out it was not a European spoonbill (think it’s Asian) and if that had been on the marsh the whole Twitching world would have been there too. 😂 


Should I have removed my patio from this natural visitor?






Not just birds. I have visited several breeding centres for big cats and wolves where chaperoned close access enabled the lens to go through the wire fences....being abruptly dragged back when the animals came too close. (I backed away myself from one approach and my rugsack came so close to the fenced area behind i was nearly grabbed by a snow leapoard poking its paw through to get me. 















Does Where and How matter more than the result??.

Last edited on Fri Jan 31st, 2020 12:49 by Eric



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Posted by jk: Fri Jan 31st, 2020 12:54 4th Post
Answering Eric's points I tend to think that it is a question of content.
Removing distractions is fine, adding new backgrounds/compositing is not.
However who am I to judge if it pleases the taker/poster.



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Posted by Eric: Fri Jan 31st, 2020 13:11 5th Post
jk wrote:
Answering Eric's points I tend to think that it is a question of content.
Removing distractions is fine, adding new backgrounds/compositing is not.
However who am I to judge if it pleases the taker/poster
I confess I have merely tarted up photos in recent times...but not from a feeling it was wrong to go further. I am simply being lazy. 😂 

I however don’t think it’s wrong to replace detail. Infra red photos are heavily edited to get the results. I’ve never had anyone say they are contrived and unreal.....because they ARE inherently unreal. We use HDR and selective masking for sharpness, noise reduction, adding dof lens blur and who knows what else. I don’t see that as interfering with the subject....merely enhancing it with respect to its surroundings. So why not change the perch or even the background?

Like I said, of late I have been trying to get it good enough in the camera to use ‘as is’.  But I have some cracking long tail tit shots...bathing and drinking in a concrete water bath which Graham tells me would be ‘marked down’ in a competition for not being natural enough. I could set up an infinity pool with moss covered stones for a more natural look. But that’s surely no different to redoing the setting in PS. o.O



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Posted by Eric: Fri Jan 31st, 2020 13:13 6th Post
Sorry for thread drift Graham...no more furry critters.



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Posted by Graham Whistler: Fri Jan 31st, 2020 17:12 7th Post
Now this IS a wild pair of African Spoonbills in the bush in Africa in eary morning sun. No messing in Photoshop apart from levels.
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Last edited on Fri Jan 31st, 2020 17:15 by Graham Whistler



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Posted by Graham Whistler: Fri Jan 31st, 2020 17:35 8th Post
Just to get things moving another wild bird for you, a Scarlet Ibis
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Last edited on Fri Jan 31st, 2020 17:36 by Graham Whistler



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Posted by Graham Whistler: Fri Jan 31st, 2020 17:49 9th Post
Then there were more!
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Posted by jk: Fri Jan 31st, 2020 18:26 10th Post
I like the 'more' picture better. :applause:



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Posted by Graham Whistler: Sat Feb 1st, 2020 08:53 11th Post
I agree they are a bit in your face.



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Posted by Eric: Sat Feb 1st, 2020 09:18 12th Post
Graham Whistler wrote:
I agree they are a bit in your face. I suppose people who are colour blind won’t even see them.:lol:



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Posted by Eric: Sat Feb 1st, 2020 11:38 13th Post
Graham Whistler wrote:
Now this IS a wild pair of African Spoonbills in the bush in Africa in eary morning sun. No messing in Photoshop apart from levels.
Are yes...maybe mine was an African one, not Asian?  Either way it was a lot less distance to see ...in Surrey. :lol:.



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Posted by Eric: Sat Feb 1st, 2020 11:39 14th Post
Graham Whistler wrote:
Then there were more!
That shows the benefit of having the zoom lens, Graham..



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Posted by jk: Sat Feb 1st, 2020 15:22 15th Post
I think the Nikon 200-500 AFS VR is probably one of my best purchases.  I resisted the 80-400 as the original lens was somewhat soft.  This new version however seems to be top notch.  

I think I need to go and sell my Nikon 400mm f2.8 AFS and D3S, I think I will trade it on for the next Fuji body I get which will be either Fuji X-H1 or XT4.  The XT4 is rumoured to have IBIS (In Body Image Stabilisation), and with my Z7, D850 and D500 my Nikon system is perfect.  I am very impressed by the Z7 with its IBIS, so much better and more useful than VR.



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Posted by Eric: Sat Feb 1st, 2020 15:55 16th Post
jk wrote:
I think the Nikon 200-500 AFS VR is probably one of my best purchases.  I resisted the 80-400 as the original lens was somewhat soft.  This new version however seems to be top notch.  

I think I need to go and sell my Nikon 400mm f2.8 AFS and D3S, I think I will trade it on for the next Fuji body I get which will be either Fuji X-H1 or XT4.  The XT4 is rumoured to have IBIS (In Body Image Stabilisation), and with my Z7, D850 and D500 my Nikon system is perfect.  I am very impressed by the Z7 with its IBIS, so much better and more useful than VR.
I have resisted any trade ins of late because WEX (who are my nearest dealer) don’t give you cash for the equipment...you have to take the full value as a PX. I discovered Harrison’s do! In fact they give the same valuation for a trade in or a cash purchase! The quotes are the same as WEX and much better than the nett amount you would get from eBay.  May be doing some thinning out soon myself. ;-)



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Posted by jk: Sat Feb 1st, 2020 16:00 17th Post
Thanks.
Harrison's are located where?  Sheffield?
https://www.harrisoncameras.co.uk/



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Posted by Eric: Sat Feb 1st, 2020 16:28 18th Post
jk wrote:
Thanks.
Harrison's are located where?  Sheffield?
https://www.harrisoncameras.co.uk/
👍 

On line quote enquiry form....https://www.harrisoncameras.co.uk/sell-camera-equipment/

if acceptable they pick up the equipment for assessment. Then give you final price or return equipment to you.

Last edited on Sat Feb 1st, 2020 16:31 by Eric



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Posted by jk: Sat Feb 1st, 2020 18:13 19th Post
Enquiry sent.
Thanks Eric.



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Posted by blackfox: Sun Feb 2nd, 2020 10:24 20th Post
that Harrisons link looks interesting ,a good heads up ... anyway back on thread we had gale force winds on the Irish Sea and the dee estuary yesterday , and as I was driving to my venue (which lasted 15 minutes after arrival due to the winds) I spotted this kestrel in its usual lamp post  lookout . pulled the car over and it took off hunting but was struggling against the wind this meant it was hovering at just above head height and allowed a very close approach pleased with the results . although this 15fps does tend to run away with you still got around 50 shots to edit if I can be bothered .





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Posted by Graham Whistler: Sun Feb 2nd, 2020 11:15 21st Post
Jeff those 3 shots are super. This is another pix of the African Sloonbill for Eric. His shot was a Eurasian Spoonbill that has black legs and grey bill with black tip to tail. The African one as you can see has red legs and face and is white all over. This shot was in the Nairobi Game Park.
.

Last edited on Sun Feb 2nd, 2020 11:17 by Graham Whistler



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Posted by Graham Whistler: Sun Feb 2nd, 2020 11:37 22nd Post
Jeff thoese Kestrel pixs were very good I just tickled this on in Photoshop and bit of USM brings the detail up. Keep up the good work your new camera is pulling in some super shots for you.
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Posted by Graham Whistler: Sun Feb 2nd, 2020 16:08 23rd Post
More Yellow-billed Storks with "friendly" crock from my Kenya trip
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Posted by Iain: Mon Feb 3rd, 2020 13:37 24th Post
One from today.

I50_0557-Edit by Iain Clyne, on Flickr

 


Posted by Graham Whistler: Mon Feb 3rd, 2020 22:22 25th Post
Good quality clean and good detail, is this the full frame?



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Posted by Iain: Tue Feb 4th, 2020 07:35 26th Post
D500 Graham.

 


Posted by Graham Whistler: Wed Feb 5th, 2020 16:39 27th Post
Blashford Lakes today better weather but very little about but got some reasonable Chaffinch shots. D850 500mm AF-S f5.6 FL Lens plus x1.4 = 700mm 1/400 sec f14  ISO 1250
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Posted by Graham Whistler: Wed Feb 5th, 2020 16:40 28th Post
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Posted by Graham Whistler: Wed Feb 5th, 2020 16:42 29th Post
This one for Eric as he is a bit more space man!
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Posted by Graham Whistler: Wed Feb 5th, 2020 16:44 30th Post
There were also about 12 Linnets but we could not get as close.
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Posted by Eric: Wed Feb 5th, 2020 18:21 31st Post
Graham Whistler wrote:
This one for Eric as he is a bit more space man!
Perfect..



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Eric
 


Posted by Graham Whistler: Thu Feb 6th, 2020 14:45 32nd Post
Male Blackcap on feeder bottom of our garden come mid pm for last few day this is best I could do through glass, it was 40 feet away so even with 700mm big blow up D850 1600 ISO. Stays less than 60 sec.
.



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Posted by blackfox: Thu Feb 6th, 2020 18:53 33rd Post
some red kite shots from yesterday at nant-y-arian mid Wales 





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Posted by jk: Thu Feb 6th, 2020 20:05 34th Post
Is the kite attacking the grebe?



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Posted by Iain: Thu Feb 6th, 2020 20:27 35th Post
No it won’t be JK it isn’t strong enough. There will be something on the water it will be after. About the only thing they can kill is mice.

 


Posted by jk: Thu Feb 6th, 2020 20:37 36th Post
Thanks Iain.



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Posted by Eric: Thu Feb 6th, 2020 22:30 37th Post
jk wrote:
Is the kite attacking the grebe? Looks like a lady Goosander.



.

Last edited on Thu Feb 6th, 2020 22:37 by Eric



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Posted by Eric: Thu Feb 6th, 2020 22:50 38th Post
Graham Whistler wrote:
Male Blackcap on feeder bottom of our garden come mid pm for last few day this is best I could do through glass, it was 40 feet away so even with 700mm big blow up D850 1600 ISO. Stays less than 60 sec.
What’s that in the feeder, Graham?
Try pinning an apple on a branch with the skin cut away a bit. Blackcaps often hang about longer on apples.

Not a good shot through blinds, but this lady sat here for some time.

.



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Posted by Eric: Fri Feb 7th, 2020 20:36 39th Post
Speaking with Mike about Jeff’s Red Kite photo, he said it was quite possible the Goosander caught a fish and being a sawbill, left a portion of the fish behind or was simply scared off by the cruising Kite....which swooped in and picked up the remnant.21:31:06o.O



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Posted by Eric: Fri Feb 7th, 2020 20:45 40th Post
Spent some time at a woodland reserve this morning. Hoping for Redpolls but the cold weather or lack thereof has meant none have ventured this far south this winter. So I had to put up with the usual cast......










.



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Posted by Eric: Fri Feb 7th, 2020 20:48 41st Post
The funniest one was this Great Tit. One peck at its seed/nut and it shot off the branch. Managed to capture the bemused moment ...


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Last edited on Fri Feb 7th, 2020 20:49 by Eric



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Posted by Graham Whistler: Fri Feb 7th, 2020 21:36 42nd Post
I like these very good crisp images. Eric what is bird no 3? I will put an apple out. Jeff liked your red kite pixs too thanks!



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Posted by Eric: Fri Feb 7th, 2020 23:24 43rd Post
Graham Whistler wrote:
I like these very good crisp images. Eric what is bird no 3? I will put an apple out. Jeff liked your red kite pixs too thanks! It’s a Reed Bunting. I dropped the file size at the upload interface on the first 3 images so they aren’t as sharp as the originals. The last one of the bemused tit, is actual file size....heavily cropped just to join the close cropping trend.

Very pleased with the D850 and 500mm. It’s become clear to me that if the light is excellent, and the ISO is obviously much lower, the D500 and D850 are very similar IQ. But as the light drops the need for higher ISO causes the D500 to lag behind in the noise stakes. So the noise level is not only more obvious but the ability to lift shadow detail or under exposed raw images, falls away. It’s my considered opinion that despite the D500’s much heralded superior performance for wildlife, it comes in a definite second to the D850 on results and processing capability, when the light drops...as it tends to do in UK winter woodlands!

Of course the alternative is to only use the D500 when the sun is on the subject matter...then it doesn’t matter.

Last edited on Fri Feb 7th, 2020 23:40 by Eric



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Posted by Eric: Fri Feb 7th, 2020 23:30 44th Post
Three more to share...







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Last edited on Fri Feb 7th, 2020 23:38 by Eric



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Posted by Graham Whistler: Sat Feb 8th, 2020 22:08 45th Post
More good pixs Eric. Agree with all you say about D850 and 500mm PF lens and your results say it all.



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Posted by Graham Whistler: Sun Feb 9th, 2020 16:13 46th Post
I'm after Kingfishers again this week before they go up river to breed. This was from this time last year on a very dull day Nikon D850 with 500mm f5.6 AV-S PF Lens & x1.4 = 700mm 1/320 sec f9 ISO 2500 I'm booked to go in the hide this Wed so hope weather improves by then. 
.



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Posted by Eric: Sun Feb 9th, 2020 16:37 47th Post
Graham Whistler wrote:
I'm after Kingfishers again this week before they go up river to breed. This was from this time last year on a very dull day Nikon D850 with 500mm f5.6 AV-S PF Lens & x1.4 = 700mm 1/320 sec f9 ISO 2500 I'm booked to go in the hide this Wed so hope weather improves by then. 
It’s going to be hard to better that photo, Graham



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Posted by Graham Whistler: Sun Feb 9th, 2020 16:42 48th Post
I've showing this as this is taken seconds before he caught the fish and exact same camera position and settings. I think this shows what Eric and I have been talking about the D850 with this lens is very good with retaining quality when you need to blow up a small bird like this simply because there is no easy way you will ever get much closer 90% of the time. 
.

Last edited on Sun Feb 9th, 2020 16:46 by Graham Whistler



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Posted by jk: Sun Feb 9th, 2020 19:10 49th Post
I agree with Eric.  That is another exceptional photo.

Hope the weather clears for you and you have good light and cooperative subjects.



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Posted by Eric: Mon Feb 10th, 2020 15:41 50th Post
In between repairing the neighbours carport, propping up my fence and fighting Ciara....I took some time to grab some more images. Poor lighting but in the middle of a storm beggars can’t be choosers....










.

Last edited on Mon Feb 10th, 2020 15:45 by Eric



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