Fordsabroad wrote in post #18443700
I am going to Florida for a week or so in November and would like to take the opportunity of improving my bird photography, I really am a novice at it. I have heard that there is an abundance of ospreys at Honeymoon Island. Can anyone give me any advice on this spot. IE is a day visit enough, what lens would be required (I am flying from the UK so are restricted by baggage allowance). Is November a good time of year, are there any better spots closer to Kissimmee/Davenport.
Any and all advice would be appreciated. I have been to Gatorland but would like to try birds of prey on this visit.
You'll see Osprey around nearly any fairly large body of water in Florida. They're common. Kissimmee has quite a few nesting Bald Eagles too, you can look up the nest sites I believe. A day visit is fine for Osprey, they fish, so just go to the water during the morning and afternoon and listen. They announce when they're around and they often squabble with other birds in territory, they're not shy at all about that. They can be spooky if you're stomping around though. Right now lots of adults are fishing and still feeding their fledglings that are not quite fishing yet.
Take the longest lenses you can. Osprey are smaller birds as far as comparing them to other large raptors. Egret & Blue Heron are often huge compared to an Osprey.
Also, wild birds are a lot less likely to be ok with you walking around than a bird in a rookery or at a place where its common. Just walking out into an area they will not be likely to be ok with you standing around. So again, longest lens you have.
I find that on crop, 400~600 is still usually barely enough for wild osprey unless you are camped out near where they often fish/nest. Just walking up, they're spooky, and you need longer lenses. If you plan it and get there early and just wait them out, you can get closer.