Saturday, June 12, 2010

Belted Kingfisher

I got an early start this morning since I had reserved the bird blind at TRNWR, however I only spent a little over an hour in there as there wasn't much action, at least nothing any closer than I could find walking the trails.
On my way to the blind, this Belted Kingfisher flew up and perched on a branch not too far from me. I've seen an occasional one fly across the refuge lately, but this is the first time I've seen one this close other than while in the blind.
Last night I read on the internet that lenses tend to have the best sharpness a couple of stops slower than full open. I have trouble with softness, so I thought I'd try switching to aperture priority mode and dial in f/7.1 rather than using program mode. In that mode the camera usually selects f/5.6. I'm not sure that was a good idea for early this morning as it was cloudy so the light was low. As a result, the camera ended up selecting a slower shutter speed causing these pictures to exhibit more camera shake than I would have expected. Live and learn :-).

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