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Friday, 5 March 2010

Day 2 at the hide and the results

A full day in the hide today, prepared my equipment last night to make sure that all batteries were charged and that the memory cards were empty.

Set off early-ish however would have like to have been there at first light. Need to speak to Martin to see if I can stay one night so that I can do this. The other thing is, if I am in the hide before first light it would be interesting to see what comes in as I would have not disturbed them at all. Every time so far I have visisted the hide the woodpecker has been there as well. This I want to capture for this project.

I borrowed my Father in-law's 500 f4 as I thought it would give me more flexibility and allow me to get closer to the subject. With this in mind I decided to take the following to site:

2 x cameras

2 x tripods and Wimberley heads

500 f4 and 300 2.8 and 1.4 and 2 x converter.

Initially I set the two cameras up but found that I then had a limited field of view and also I could not pan the camera how I wanted to. I decided that I would concentrate on the use of one lens at one time but have the other one ready to hand. The light today was excellent, I was so glad that I set up this other perch as when the light had fallen away from the other branches, it was still on this perch at the front. It was actually constantly on it all day. When I filled the feeders, I had also on the previous visit bored some holes into the log so that I could stash some food in it.

I think I need to maybe put some peanut butter somewhere as this will then draw in the woodpecker as from previous experience they really like it.

One thing I did notice was that the front perch was too close for the 500 f4. I worked out that by moving the hide back about 1ft that I could then use the 500 all the time.

Results of the day

The results were actually quite surprising and I was very pleased with the days results. I found that at times using the flash really worked as fill in flash when the light dropped off. I need to experiment with the positioning of the flash guns to accentuate the bird. Rik has also said for me to think about blowing them up really big using genuine fractals. I will look into this. The best image of the day was however taken using natural light with the 500 . It is a blue tit on my log with a vey muted background. If the rest of the images are as good as this I will be very happy.

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