A6000 Back to Wetlands, and BIFs

Started May 5, 2014 | Discussions thread
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zackiedawg Forum Pro • Posts: 29,412
A6000 Back to Wetlands, and BIFs

Well I got the usual mother-nature joke this weekend - because I planned the entire week to get back to the wetlands this past Saturday to do some more BIF shooting with the A6000, after my first tests on last Saturday were met with overcast weather, mother nature decided to be a fun-loving prankster, and gave me 5 consecutive days of sunshine and blue skies while I was stuck at work, then Saturday brought a 60% chance of rain and heavy overcast lasting the entire day, concluding with rainshowers and lightning which chased me out by mid-afternoon.  Ha ha!  Very funny, mother nature!  And just to put a cap on it, Sunday, which I was already pre-obligated to spend with a friend, having lunch then an afternoon movie, was clear blue sky and sunshine.  Oh, mother nature, you're too much!  Very funny!

So, not to be deterred, I still went out Saturday with the A6000, 55-210mm lens, and DH1758 combo to catch some more birds in flight action...this time looking for some other challenging birds, and this time, actually setting my memory mode correctly to S priority so I could keep shutter speeds above 1/1000!  I also still had sharpening in camera set to 0 last week, and turned it down to -1, which for me seems to be a sweet spot for Sony sensors - preserves all the details, avoids as many artifacts and sharpening halos, and sharpens up beautifully in post if needed.

Here we go:

A wee little bird - a least tern - was flying along looking for fish below.  Mega-crop here, as this little guy barely filled a twentieth of the frame.

The gangly, graceful, great blue heron coming in low and fast for a landing

This was an interesting reaction - this cattle egret was coming in to its nest, and another bird it barely cleared had taken a snap at him - right afterwards, and before landing, this egret basically vomited in mid-air...you can just see it coming out here

Not sure if this wood stork is going to impress any ladies with his choice of nest-building materials.  Usually they bring back sturdy branches as long as their body - this one was bringing back essentially a twig!

Another cattle egret, banking away

This cattle egret was coming straight on at high speed - he had a much bigger stick for his nest, at least in relation to his body size!

A great egret soaring past, the white shining against the green foliage and grey storm skies

The light was getting really poor by this point, as evidenced by the need to go to ISO4,000 to get a 1/1000 shutter speed with the lens wide open - surprisingly with less than 1/2 second notice to grab this grackle as it flew by at very high speed, I got 2 out of 3 frames in focus - mostly!

The last one isn't an in flight shot - but I felt I should include it.  This red-winged blackbird seemed to want to tell me something...he was even pointing it out.  As you can see from the previous 9 shots - I took his advice.  Thank you, Mr. red-wing...there was indeed much action in the sky!

Comments, questions, critique welcomed as always.

This time I wasn't out to prove or illustrate any burst sequences or anything, but just go out for my normal, regular wetlands outings...now that I know I can reliably use the A6000 as a BIF rig.  Now, if I could only get mother nature to stop her silly pranks, and actually give me nice, sunny, blue skies ON the day I want to shoot!

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 zackiedawg's gear list:zackiedawg's gear list
Sony a6300 Sony E 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 OSS Sony E 16mm F2.8 Pancake Sony DT 18-250mm F3.5-6.3 Voigtlander 35mm F1.4 Nokton +22 more
Sony a6000
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