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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre Bird Talk 
Thread started 06 Aug 2011 (Saturday) 14:36
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Birding and Wildlife

 
KandJinIN
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Aug 06, 2011 14:36 |  #1

So I have been playing around with DLSR's as a hobby more than anything else, but am at the point where I would like to give birding and wildlife a legitimate shot. But after reading some posts I seem to have gravely underestimated the time involved. People are talking about taking day trips into the woods with hunters blinds and such.

Is it just unrealistic to think that maybe an hour hike in the woods I could get some decent shots?




  
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Wallace ­ River
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Aug 06, 2011 15:14 |  #2

Not at all! I've got some of my better shots from either my boat in the river, or my car just driving around country roads. The car acts as a blind too and as long as you don;t open the door or hang too far out the window, it works great.


IAN - Living life on the shores of the Wallace River in northern Nova Scotia, Canada :
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Duane ­ N
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Aug 06, 2011 18:03 as a reply to  @ Wallace River's post |  #3

This time of year I invest about 2 hours each trip (including travel) to get the images I'm after. Don't expect things to fall in your lap...time, observation and patience is needed...the pictures are secondary.


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Candor
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Aug 06, 2011 19:40 |  #4

I did a lot of that when I started out in wildlife photography and had limited success. I was lucky a few times but it was rare. Woodland trails are generally not a good spot were I live. Swamps, lakes/ponds and rivers usually offer better success for me.

I would check with local birders or subscribe to a birders e-mail list and check sites like:

http://birdingonthe.ne​t/mailinglists/INDB.ht​ml (external link)

Check the local state parks and NWR's and talk to the folks there for some pointers. The more places you visit and hike the more you will find high success spots. Also pick the minds of any photographers minds you run across as they usually have some good spots.

It doesn't require endless hours of sitting in a blind but you need to find the high activity places and that can take some time. Good luck.


Mike
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KandJinIN
THREAD ­ STARTER
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Aug 06, 2011 20:00 |  #5

I know I am an impatient person in general, as I have noticed with a lot of the shots I try and take and give up on after a few failed attempts, but I am glad that there is some success that can be had without such a large time commitment to go along with it.

So I have to work on my patience (not a shocker) but I don't have to sit outside forever (a big relief). Thanks for the input




  
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Nighthound
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Aug 06, 2011 22:06 |  #6

While I have had good opportunities in brief outings, I've been far better rewarded when I put in a greater effort. Personally I get more out of 3 or 4 hours, not only in photos but in the overall experience. The more time I spend out in the classroom the better shooter I become and the more I connect with nature. The connection teaches me things that improve my photos and my life, so for me more is better. I only get out two mornings a week but it's much-needed therapy that sustains me through a stressful work week.


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Jerry ­ Green
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Aug 07, 2011 08:54 |  #7

My yard/garden is a Certified Wildlife Habitat. I have feeders, posing sticks, water feature and flowers visible from my kitchen and deck. When the weather is not to hot or cold I keep a camera with a telephoto lens pointed out my open kitchen window. I check it occasionally and get some great shots from there. As pointed out your car makes a good blind and I have spent many hours with a photographer/birder friend crusing the back roads looking for birds. Here in north Alabama we are blessed with state parks, Land Trust Properties,Wheeler Wildlife Refuge, and green ways plus rivers and lakes so just a short trip puts us in areas for great birding opportunities. Check out what is close around you and then branch out. Use the frequent short outings or just in your neighborhood to hone your skills as a bird photographer.

My kitchen window:

IMAGE: http://gofish.smugmug.com/Other/Other-assorted-photos/Kitchen-window-set-up/1186545781_iXMec-L.jpg

Jerry Green

  
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Wallace ­ River
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Aug 07, 2011 09:03 |  #8

Jerry Green wrote in post #12891166 (external link)
Check out what is close around you

I see photography is not your only passtime Jerry ;)


IAN - Living life on the shores of the Wallace River in northern Nova Scotia, Canada :
Canon 1D4, 1D-X, almost enough glass.
My Flickr (external link).

  
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mikeivan
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Aug 07, 2011 13:15 |  #9

Jerry Green wrote in post #12891166 (external link)
My kitchen window:
QUOTED IMAGE

It is not often that a photograph on POTN makes me laugh but this one did. I would not last long with a rig like this.

To the OP, in my experience, shady trails are not the best locales for bird photography. Water is an important attraction for birds. For me, a half day is about the minimum trip for getting some good chances. It takes a lot of chances to get a good image. I have only been in a blind one time; it was a fantastic experience. That is a good suggestion about staying in your car and driving the roads on a NWR. Boardwalks are another personal favorite. My best experiences have been at known birding hot spots: http://www.camacdonald​.com/birding/usindiana​.htm (external link)


MIKEIVAN

  
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scrumpy
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Aug 07, 2011 13:27 |  #10

Jerry Green wrote in post #12891166 (external link)
My yard/garden is a Certified Wildlife Habitat. I have feeders, posing sticks, water feature and flowers visible from my kitchen and deck. When the weather is not to hot or cold I keep a camera with a telephoto lens pointed out my open kitchen window. I check it occasionally and get some great shots from there. As pointed out your car makes a good blind and I have spent many hours with a photographer/birder friend crusing the back roads looking for birds. Here in north Alabama we are blessed with state parks, Land Trust Properties,Wheeler Wildlife Refuge, and green ways plus rivers and lakes so just a short trip puts us in areas for great birding opportunities. Check out what is close around you and then branch out. Use the frequent short outings or just in your neighborhood to hone your skills as a bird photographer.

My kitchen window:
QUOTED IMAGE

Agree with all you say. More to the point, I was given a bottle of Jack Danial's Whiskey last Christmas. Tell me how I drink it; neat, with water or what? Cheers.


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Have patience. All things are difficult before they become easy ;)

  
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jhayesvw
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Aug 07, 2011 15:50 as a reply to  @ scrumpy's post |  #11

i have 2 things to add to this thread

1. Drink Jack with Coke.

2. I have had a great time going bird and wildlife shooting and have not exceeded 2 to 3 hours per outing yet.

as stated earlier, find wildlife hotspots in your area and hit them frequently to hone your skills.
i cant wait for this fall and winter as AZ fills up with wildlife



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Jerry ­ Green
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Aug 09, 2011 15:30 |  #12

I take care of the Hummingbirds too.

IMAGE: http://gofish.smugmug.com/Nature/Hummingbirds-2011/i-9DgjQjz/0/L/HB-and-JD-L.jpg

Many of the Jack Daniels fans only drink it straight, it is that good, or if you want a little chill a couple of ice cubes.

Jerry Green

  
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JonK
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Aug 10, 2011 16:24 |  #13

Don't forget how important it is to plan your trip around the time birds are doing their thing. When I first got into it, I would go down to Cape May, NJ and break out the camera around 11AM. I was frustrated I didn't see anything for a few hours. Then it dawned on me... the time of day I do see birds is never really between 11AM - 2PM lol.


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That ­ Dude
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Mar 13, 2013 13:04 as a reply to  @ JonK's post |  #14

Nobody knows where the chance will come from, gotta be out there to get the shot no matter where that happens to be!


7D/40D and an ever increasing pile!!:D

  
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Jeffkstkrt
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Mar 20, 2013 12:39 |  #15

Jerry Green wrote in post #12891166 (external link)
My yard/garden is a Certified Wildlife Habitat. I have feeders, posing sticks, water feature and flowers visible from my kitchen and deck. When the weather is not to hot or cold I keep a camera with a telephoto lens pointed out my open kitchen window. I check it occasionally and get some great shots from there. As pointed out your car makes a good blind and I have spent many hours with a photographer/birder friend crusing the back roads looking for birds. Here in north Alabama we are blessed with state parks, Land Trust Properties,Wheeler Wildlife Refuge, and green ways plus rivers and lakes so just a short trip puts us in areas for great birding opportunities. Check out what is close around you and then branch out. Use the frequent short outings or just in your neighborhood to hone your skills as a bird photographer.

My kitchen window:
QUOTED IMAGE

Nice setup!


_______________Canon 5D ii / 24-105L / 70-200 2.8L / 50 1.4 / Tamron 90 Macro

  
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