Sunday, July 20, 2008

Location, Location, Location - Osprey @ Belle Haven Marina

So much of what I see and photograph is made possible by location. This spot at the marina, brought to my attention by Kim, is a great example of location at work.

In the second half of the day, the sun gets lower and is to the west (duh) while the action is to the east. This creates a very predictable good setup for light.

Another thing the location has going for it is that the osprey nest is in a fairly high traffic part of the Potomac river. There's a boat launch, and docks right near the nest. This gets the birds more accustomed to people and tolerant of them. Another good example of this is with the Hawks I've photographed at the national zoo, as well as the Black-Crowned Night Herons there too.

From the animal's perspective in all those cases, they see tens or hundreds of people on a given day.

Comparing that to a animal or bird, that might see one or two people a day (or none) the odds of getting a good encounter are much much lower with the isolated subject.

Part of why I wrote the above was to encourage other people to keep venturing out to new and different locations in search of better encounters and photos. Flickr has a been a great resource for me when it comes to discovering locations, most places I go are a result of flickr searches, contacts, etc.

Above cropped for effect, I had the entire bird in frame, and select sharpening was used (ie only the bird part of the photo was sharpened, not the sky). Taken with D300 and 80-400mm VR f/4.5-6.5.

I've been happy with the 80-400mmVR lens, but I want more. Kim has gotten me jealous of her gear, but I don't think I will be happy with a huge lens that requires a tripod. So, I think I might be looking in to the 200-400mm f/4 Nikkor lens. The only person I know on flickr that uses this 200-400mm lens if Michel and his work is amazing, inspires me, etc. If you're not familiar with his photos, start by checking out his girl friend.

Here are some photos and videos from Belle Haven Marina.
Osprey Chick (Finiky's)

Got Fish?  Osprey @ Belle Haven Marina 7/18/2008


Location, Location, Location - Osprey @ Belle Haven Marina