Birds in Flight

_DSC3801willet_1024Catching a bird in flight can be a tricky thing.  When I’m sitting or walking along the beach, I’ll have my camera settings at whatever is appropriate for the subject matter and lighting, but when I’m between deliberate shooting, I will change my camera settings so that I am ready for fast shooting, just in case a bird of some sort flies by. I like to shoot at f8 to get wings as well as a bird’s body in focus, and if that means shooting at a higher ISO, then so be it.  Changing settings as you are tracking is distracting when also trying to compose a shot, not to mention, adding to an additional hit and miss aspect of capturing the image.


This flock of sanderlings was especially tricky to capture in flight. They are very fast and they are not all in the same plane of focus. This was 1/640 sec; f/8; ISO 400.


1/1250 sec; f/8; ISO 400. We can see that even at this speed, there is a touch of motion blur on the wings of this sandpiper, but its face in in focus, which is the most important thing. The most important area that needs to be in focus is always the eyes.




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