Thursday, November 5, 2015

Adapting to the Day

Left home for some Bald Eagle photography on the Susquehanna River with great expectations.  It has become an annual pilgrimage with the memory of some very active feeding, when conditions are right.  The action can be so fast; it is like batting practice for a ball player.

Well, this time it was pretty slow. My practice was limited to a few feeding passes by lone Bald Eagles. Not very exciting.

The ideal is some action involving either grabbing fish from the water, or the attempts of one eagle to steal another one's catch. Finally had a few successful catches, but, the birds were pretty distant or in poor light. Below is the about the best I could do.

Sometimes you get desperate for anything to photograph, if for nothing else than practice.  A Ring-billed Gull will do.

On day two, we'd had enough, and headed home with a stop at a Pennsylvania natural area that sometimes has ducks and geese.  Wasn't much going on there either, until we pulled into a turn-around near a closed gate and saw some Ringneck Pheasant cock birds. The light was brilliant and in a good direction. Since we were sitting in the car, the birds were unaware of our closeness, and proceeded to feed in a heavy tangle of vines and  dead goldenrod.  The brilliant colors make a cock inclined to stay inside cover for safety.

Patience does eventually pay off, however.  The birds seemed to have exhausted their search for food and headed out of the cover for a nearby corn field. In a flash we had a nice set of images.  The color is amazing in perfect light.

The lesson is that practice has its reward, though sometimes in unexpected ways.


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