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Mike Bons
01-17-2014, 10:47 PM
One of my most relaxing things to do is to head down to Presquile Provincial Park and take pictures of ducks, mainly diving ducks. It can be cold and windy but there is usually lots of ducks and a good variety at that. Yesterday as I sat there I had this one juvenile drake greater scaup that continued to dive and feed right in front of me, completely unconcerned by my presence. At times he would even get to close for the MFD of my lens (3.5m). He is not exactly the prettiest duck at this point in his life but I had a great time photographing him as he went about his business.

1.
http://www.mikebons.com/img/s5/v126/p517987771-5.jpg

2.
http://www.mikebons.com/img/s10/v105/p490528955-5.jpg

3.
http://www.mikebons.com/img/s2/v58/p36758486-5.jpg

4
http://www.mikebons.com/img/s10/v111/p62455741-5.jpg

Of course there was more than just bluebills there. I seen a number of goldeneye, bufflehead, longtails, and mute swans, but I was got a few shots of one of my favorite ducks; redheads.

5.
http://www.mikebons.com/img/s1/v56/p110106368-5.jpg

6.
http://www.mikebons.com/img/s10/v108/p142950710-5.jpg

7. Hen redhead in flight
http://www.mikebons.com/img/s5/v123/p413295502-5.jpg

Marko
01-18-2014, 09:11 AM
I just love it when members can't sleep or they get bored and they create fab sets like this

1, 5, 6, 7- Fab.
5 is my fave. Love how the light hit the eye and the wave behind the head.


I'd be curious to know something Mike, what's your ratio on tack sharp eyes.?

Mike Bons
01-18-2014, 06:48 PM
I just love it when members can't sleep or they get bored and they create fab sets like this

1, 5, 6, 7- Fab.
5 is my fave. Love how the light hit the eye and the wave behind the head.

I'd be curious to know something Mike, what's your ratio on tack sharp eyes.?

Thanks Marko. Getting eyes tack sharp is obvious one of the most important elements. As you can see in the pictures of him diving the eyes aren't tack sharp, which is more of lack of DoF than an AF problem. This duck was so close to me and I was using a 400mm lens that when he dove towards me I simply didn't have the dof. The redheads were a little easier as they were further away from me. To add to the difficulty, the winds that day had gusts of up to 60km/h so there were some pretty big waves. Therefor a duck riding a 3 foot wave is easier to AF on at 25yards then it is at 8 yards. To try to answer your question though, when the ducks are swimming my ratio is actually quite high. As far as technique goes, I use AI Servo (continuous in Nikon) with back button AF. To be honest, I use that setup even when taking portraits. It beats holding the shutter half way down and recomposing.

Hillbillygirl
01-19-2014, 06:35 AM
Very nice set as always Mike, and another vote for #5 here.

Lungelarry
01-20-2014, 08:05 PM
great shots.......love redheads

aubintbay
01-22-2014, 12:29 PM
Wow. Great set. Nice of that one to cooperate so much. I like the action caught in the second shot.