Light sucked, but subject was great: Bobcat

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zackiedawg
zackiedawg Forum Pro • Posts: 34,473
Light sucked, but subject was great: Bobcat
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Bobcats are not a common sighting around where I live - they're out there, but hide well.  I've spotted them in the past maybe 5 times over 15 years...and it's been at least 7 years since my last sighting, so I've been on a real dry spell.

Finally, Saturday, I was able to see and photograph one.  It required getting up at an awful time on a Saturday morning (6am, something I never do), getting to the wetlands before the sun was up, heading out in darkness, and dealing with an extremely rainy day and heavy overcast with no good light.

The first sighting was very distant out on a levee - because of the rain and the light, I decided to forego my bigger 200-600mm lens and stick with the lighter, smaller 100-400mm...and hoped the cat would get a little closer.  Which it did.  There was a hazy fog that morning, and sheets of rain...plus the first sighting was 2 minutes after sunrise, with a massive thunderstorm to the east blocking whatever the sun attempted to shine.  High ISO was the order of the day.

But bobcats for me are such a rare sighting, I'll take any conditions necessary to get some more shots of these beautiful animals in the wild.

Shots taken with a Sony A6600 and FE 100-400mm GM OSS lens, and are posted at 1800 pixels on the long side if you view them in original size:

First sighting right at sunrise, through the haze and rain - the wet bobcat popped up onto the levee about 360 feet away while hunting for rodents or rabbits

She snuck back into the tall grasses on the right, and disappeared for about 20 minutes.  Then she popped back out 100 feet closer, about 250 feet away this time

After crossing to the left side of the levee, she stalked along the edge of the levee, under the cover of the taller grasses, and poked her head out just 50 feet away

She decided I was standing in the way of where she wanted to go - so she marched out of the grass, crouching low and cautiously, headed straight for me...I was pulled back to less than 200mm and she was filling the frame, within 20 feet of me and closing

I failed to get the next shot as she quickly darted past me about 5 feet away - too quick and too close for me to focus and get a fast enough shutter speed in that light.  Still awesome to see and get so close to such a beautiful animal!

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Justin
galleries: www.pbase.com/zackiedawg

 zackiedawg's gear list:zackiedawg's gear list
Sony a6600 Sony FE 100-400mm F4.5-5.6 Sony FE 200-600 F5.6-6.3 Sony E 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 OSS Sony E 16mm F2.8 Pancake +21 more
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