Help me understand this BIF image

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JustBob Contributing Member • Posts: 533
Help me understand this BIF image

So I was taking pictures of a mature bald eagle harassing a waterbird about 200 yards off shore. Z7 and 70-200F4 (the latest one). I'm new to Nikon and the Z7.

It was just an experiment, the action was way too far away for a good image. Shutter priority and 1/500th. VR on for both the lens (Normal) and the camera. Uncompressed RAW.

Here is what I was shooting just for context:

The camera was achieving focus easily. I shot maybe 30 frames, then the eagle started flying right toward my position. Unfortunately the sun would be behind the bird when it got close to me. I didn't have time for exposure compensation.

Uncropped image (reduced to 2k pixels for this jpeg). In LR I have boosted the exposure by 1.9 and shadows by 57. Otherwise it is pretty black.

Here is the exif info:

Filename - eagle-0493.jpg
Make - NIKON CORPORATION
Model - NIKON Z 7
XResolution - 72
YResolution - 72
ResolutionUnit - Inch
Software - Adobe Photoshop Lightroom Classic 8.0 (Windows)
DateTime - 2018:11:13 12:27:22
ExifOffset - 222
ExposureTime - 1/500 seconds
FNumber - 8
ExposureProgram - Shutter priority
ISOSpeedRatings - 64
ExifVersion - 0230
DateTimeOriginal - 2018:11:08 13:42:18
DateTimeDigitized - 2018:11:08 13:42:18
ShutterSpeedValue - 1/500 seconds
ApertureValue - F 8.00
ExposureBiasValue - 0.00
MeteringMode - Multi-segment
LightSource - Auto
Flash - Not fired
FocalLength - 200.00 mm
SubsecTimeOriginal - 07
SubsecTimeDigitized - 07
ColorSpace - sRGB
FocalPlaneXResolution - 2301.32
FocalPlaneYResolution - 2301.32
FocalPlaneResolutionUnit - Centimeter
SensingMethod - One-chip color area sensor
FileSource - DSC - Digital still camera
SceneType - A directly photographed image
CustomRendered - Custom process
ExposureMode - Auto
White Balance - Auto
FocalLengthIn35mmFilm - 200 mm
SceneCaptureType - Standard
GainControl - None
Contrast - Normal
Saturation - Normal
Sharpness - Normal
SubjectDistanceRange - Unknown

Here is a 1:1 crop:

I chose 1/500th because eagles are relatively slow moving birds unless diving. 1/500th certainly should have resulted in a clear shot. Now this image was taken 1 second after the prior shot. I have been following the shutter stock thread, but had not yet enabled EFCS.

Certainly I was panning to keep the bird in the finder, although that was not difficult.

The next shot in the sequence, taken during the same second:

Displays a similar blurring. I only boosted this one 1/2 stop in LR.

For how much I would have been panning (relatively show I think), at 1/500th I would have expected a clean image. Pretty sure I was in AFS, only firing when I had a green box.

So what do you think, is this just motion blur?

Or some kind of mismatch of the VR in the camera and lens due to my panning?

Or?

With the 24-70 kit lens I have had some tack sharp shots of flying seagulls, which fly much faster. I have also had amazing tack sharp shots of other subjects with the 70-200, like this one:

TIA for your thoughts. Bob.

Nikon Z7
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