Not An Easy Bird … « Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

Not An Easy Bird ...

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I have been walking a ton — more than 11 miles yesterday. That included 22 holes of golf. Very badly played golf. On my 5.5-mile Wednesday morning walk I had four southbound migrant Least Sandpipers flying over the lake down by the pier. I have started work on my 2017 taxes will begin work on the programs for the Memphis Photo Expo today.

PHOTOEXPO 2018

If you missed the PHOTOEXPO 2018 announcement and live anywhere within driving or flying distance of Memphis, TN, click here for the info. I have rides to Beale Street for both nights. If you are attending, please stop by the BAA table for a handshake and a hug.

BIRDS AS ART

BIRDS AS ART is registered in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.


Selling Your Used Photo Gear Through BIRDS AS ART

Selling your used (or like-new) photo gear through the BAA Blog is a great idea. We charge only a 5% commission. One of the more popular used gear for sale sites charged a minimum of 20%. Plus assorted fees! Yikes. They went out of business. And e-Bay fees are now up to 13%. The minimum item price here is $500 (or less for a $25 fee). If you are interested please scroll down here or shoot us an e-mail with the words Items for Sale Info Request cut and pasted into the Subject line :). Stuff that is priced fairly — I offer pricing advice to those who agree to the terms — usually sells in no time flat. Over the past year, we have sold many dozens of items. Do know that prices on some items like the EOS-1D Mark IV, the old Canon 100-400, the old 500mm, the EOS-7D and 7D Mark II and the original 400mm DO lens have been dropping steadily. You can always see the current listings by clicking on the Used Photo Gear tab on the orange-yellow menu bar near the top of each blog post page.

Recent Sales

Bill Ketterer sold his Canon EF 500mm f/4L IS USM lens in excellent condition for the lowest ever BAA price of $3399.00 in early June.
Jim Keener sold his Canon EOS-1DX Mark II in near-mint condition for $3,999.00 the first day it was listed.
Ray Maynard sold his Canon 1.4X III teleconverter in near-mint condition for the low price of $299.00 in late June, 2018.
Randall Ennis sold his Canon EOS-1D Mark IV in excellent condition for $849.00 in late June.
Joel Williams sold his Sony Vario-Tessar T FE 16-35 f/4 ZA OSS lens in like-new condition for $629 (was $749) in late June, 2018.
Joel Williams also sold his Fujifilm XF 50-140mm f/2.8 R LM OIS WR lens in like-new condition for $749 (was $949) in April 2018.
Pierre Williot sold his Canon EOS 7D Mark II in like-new condition for a very fair $848.00 in late June, 2018.
Top BAA used gear seller Jim Keener sold his Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L IS III USM Lens in like-new condition for the BAA record low price of $1349.00 the first day it was listed in late June.
Jim Keener sold a Canon EOS 5D Mark III body in excellent condition for the BAA record-low price of $999.00 (was $1149.00) in mid-June.
Jim Keener sold a Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II USM lens in like-new condition for the BAA record low price of $1099.00 in Early June.
Steve Traudt sold an Xtrahand Vest, the Khumbu model, size XL, in very good condition for the BAA record-low price of $179.

New Listings

Wimberley V-2 Tripod Head

Bill Wingfield is offering a Wimberley V-2 WH-200 Gimbal Head in very good condition and perfect working order for $399.00. The sale includes insured ground shipping too US addresses. Your item will not ship until your check clears unless other arrangements are made.

Please contact Bill via e-mail or by phone at 1-843-729-6670 (Eastern time zone).

Gitzo GT3532LS Carbon Fiber tripod

Bill Wingfield is also offering a Gitzo GT3532LS Carbon Fiber tripod in good condition for $299.00. The sale includes insured ground shipping too US addresses. Your item will not ship until your check clears unless other arrangements are made.

Please contact Bill via e-mail or by phone at 1-843-729-6670 (Eastern time zone).

Recent Re-run

Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8 L IS II USM Lens

Bill Wingfield is offering a Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8 L IS II USM lens in excellent to near-mint condition for $1049.00. The sale includes the zippered lens case, the front and rear lens caps, and insured ground shipping via major courier to US addresses only. Your item will not ship until your check clears unless other arrangements are made.

Please contact Bill via e-mail or by phone at 1-843-729-6670 (Eastern time zone).

I owned and used this incredibly versatile lens for birds and wildlife and landscapes and Urbex for many years with both the 1.4X and the 2X teleconverters. It was great indoors for events like granddaughter Maya’s dance recitals. artie

Price Drop

Canon EOS 5DS R mega mega-pixel dSLR

Price Reduced $200 on July 19, 2018.

Pierre Williot is offering a Canon EOS 5DS R in like-new condition for a very fair $2199.00 (was $2399.00). A screen protector was applied to the rear LCD as it came out of the box. The sale includes the front cap, the camera strap, a Vello Battery Grip, the battery charger, USB cable,the Instruction Manual, and insured ground shipping via major courier to US addresses only is included. Your item will not ship until your check clears unless other arrangements are made.

Please contact Pierre via e-mail or by text message to 1-716-481-7158 (Eastern Time Zone).

Without an anti-aliasing filter, the 5DS R will–for those with good sharpness techniques–produce large high-quality image files that feature hard to believe detail. You have seen the amazing 100% crops showing fine-feather detail in many older blog posts. And it is not bad for flight photography either! artie

Money Saving Reminder

If you need a hot photo item that is out of stock at B&H, would enjoy free overnight shipping, and would like a $50 discount on your first purchase, click here to order and enter the coupon code BIRDSASART at checkout. If you are looking to strike a deal on Canon or Nikon gear (including the big telephotos) or on a multiple item order, contact Steve Elkins via e-mail or on his cell at (479) 381-2592 (Eastern time) and be sure to mention your BIRDSASART coupon code and use it for your online order. Patrick Sparkman saved $350 on a recent purchase!

Via e-mail from Gary Meyer

Thanks for posting instructions on where to get the Nikon D850 quickly. Bedford shipped mine the same day. Wow, you sure got good connections!



Booking.Com

Several folks on the UK IPT used the Booking.Com link below for there Edinburgh hotels, got great rates, and saved a handsome $25.00 in the process. If you too would like to give Booking.Com a shot, click here and to earn a $25 reward on your first booking. Thanks to the many who have already tried and used this great service.

Gear Questions and Advice

Too many folks attending BAA IPTs and dozens of photographers whom I see in the field and on BPN, are–out of ignorance–using the wrong gear especially when it comes to tripods and more especially, tripod heads… Please know that I am always glad to answer your gear questions via e-mail. Those questions might deal with systems, camera bodies, accessories, and/or lens choices and decisions.

Whimbrel-looking-for-prey-items-_W5A4249-La-Shores-Beach,-CA

This image was created on the 2017 San Diego IPT with the Induro GIT 304L/Mongoose M3.6-mounted Canon EF 500mm f/4L IS II USM lens, Canon Extender EF 1.4X III, and the Canon EOS 5D Mark IV. ISO 1600. Evaluative metering -1/3 stop as framed: 1/400 sec. at f/6.3. AWB very late in the afternoon.

AI Servo/Expand/Shutter button AF was active at the moment of exposure. The selected point was placed on the bird’s neck.

Image #1: Whimbrel hunting

Whimbrel

An excerpt adapted from my Shorebirds; Beautiful Beachcombers

The wild, rolling call of the Whimbrel seems to be born of the ocean waves over which it flies. Its strongly de-curved bill and boldly striped crown help identify it. Whimbrels dine on a variety of invertebrate shorebird fare (and even berries on the breeding grounds!) Their favorite winter foods include sand crabs on the Pacific Coast and fiddler crabs in Florida.

Whimbrels are always dark brown above, light below. The neck and breast are streaked brown and the feathers or the upperparts are spotted, edge-notched, and fringed with whitish-buff. The juvenile upperparts feathers are more neatly spotted and edge-notched giving them a crisply patterned look. Whimbrels nest on grassy tundra hummocks. They migrate along both coasts and winter mainly from California to Chile and on south Atlantic, Gulf, Caribbean, and northern South American beaches. Non-breeding plumage is a lighter-toned version of breeding plumage.

The wing-stretching Whimbrel image on page 35 of Shorebirds; Beautiful Beachcombers was created (on film) in La Jolla.

Not An Easy Bird …

When a bird photographer says that this or that species is “not an easy bird,” it means that this or that species is not an easy bird to photograph. Some might be rare. Some might be very shy and hard to approach. Soome, like Black-billed Magpie in the west, are common, will hang out at picnic areas, and come to food scraps but they rarely sit still for more than a second. Others like the Wood Pigeons in the UK, are abundant and fairly tame but — at least in my experience — rarely do anything but forage in the grass or sit on ugly fenceposts.

Whimbrel is not a common bird. They occur regularly on migration in northeastern US coastal areas but they are very shy; you rarely get within two hundred yards of an adult. Juveniles might let you get within a hundred yards before taking flight. Things are a bit better in Florida. You see them only rarely, but they can be somewhat approachable; you might get a few portraits with a long lens and a TC. I do not have a lot of experience with this species on the west coast, but I can say that they can be easy in San Diego. We visit one beach on the San Diego IPT where they can often be found and are usually quite friendly. We often find them in the vicinity of The Crevice in La Jolla; head shots there are not uncommon.

Whimbrel-foraging-_W5A4198-La-Shores-Beach,-CA

This image was also created on the 2017 San Diego IPT with the Induro GIT 304L/Mongoose M3.6-mounted Canon EF 500mm f/4L IS II USM lens, Canon Extender EF 1.4X III, and the Canon EOS 5D Mark IV. ISO 800. Evaluative metering at zero: 1/400 sec. at f/6.3. AWB. Image #2 was created 25 minutes before Image #1 thus explaining the lower ISO.

AI Servo/Expand/Shutter button AF was active at the moment of exposure. The selected point was placed on the bird’s upper back.

Image #1: Whimbrel hunting

Image Questions

#1: Which image best shows the species? Why?

#2: Which image is more interesting? Why?

#3: Which image is your favorite? Why?

SD-2019-card

San Diego offers a wealth of very attractive natural history subjects, including and especially the Pacific race of California Brown Pelican. With annual visits spanning more than four decades, I have lots of photographic experience there … Click on the composite to enjoy a larger version.

2019 San Diego 4 1/2-DAY BIRDS AS ART Instructional Photo-Tour (IPT) SUN JAN 20, 2019 thru and including the morning session on THURS JAN 24: 4 1/2 days: $2099.

(Limit: 10/Openings: 8)

Introductory Meet and Greet at 7:00pm on the evening before the IPT begins; SAT JAN 19, 2019.

Please see the Dancing Grebe Morning Add-On Info below

Join me in San Diego to photograph the spectacular breeding plumage Brown Pelicans with their fire-engine red and olive green bill pouches; Brandt’s (nesting with eggs and possibly chicks) and Double-crested Cormorants; breeding plumage Wood and Ring-necked Duck; other duck species possible including Lesser Scaup, Redhead, and Surf Scoter; a variety of gulls including Western, California, and the gorgeous Heermann’s, all in full breeding plumage; shorebirds including Marbled Godwit, Willet, Sanderling and Black-bellied Plover; many others are possible including Least, Western, and Spotted Sandpiper, Whimbrel, Black and Ruddy Turnstone, Semipalmated Plover, and Surfbird; Harbor Seals (depending on the current regulations) and California Sea Lions; and Bird of Paradise flowers. And as you can see by studying the IPT cards, there are some nice bird-scape and landscape opportunities as well. Not to mention a ton of excellent flight photography opportunities and instruction.

Please note: where permitted and on occasion, ducks and gulls will be attracted (or re-located) with offerings of grains and healthy breads.

Learning Exposure, Whether You Like It Or Not

Whether you like it or not, we will be beating the subject of exposure like a dead horse. In every new situation you will hear my thoughts on the exposure situation along with my thoughts on both Nikon and Canon histograms and the subject of blinkies. Whether you like it or not, you will learn to work in manual mode and to get the right exposure every time as long as a bird gives you ten seconds with the light constant.And you will learn what to do when the light is changing constantly. What you learn about exposure will be one of the great take-aways on every IPT.

San-Diego-card-B-2019

Though the pelicans will be the stars of the show on this IPT, there will be many other handsome and captivating subjects in wonderful settings. Click on the composite to enjoy a larger version.

It Ain’t Just Pelicans

With gorgeous subjects just sitting there waiting to have their pictures taken, photographing the pelicans on the cliffs is about as easy as nature photography gets. With the winds from the east almost every morning there is usually some excellent flight photography as well. And the pelicans are almost always doing something interesting: preening, scratching, bill pouch cleaning, or squabbling. And then there are those crazy head throws that are thought to be a form of intra-flock communication. You will be guided as to how to make the best of all of those opportunities. And depending on the weather and local conditions and tides, there are a variety of fabulous photo chances available in and around San Diego.


san-diego-card-neesie

Did I mention that there are wealth of great birds and natural history subjects in San Diego in winter? Click on the composite to enjoy a larger version.

The San Diego Details

This IPT will include five 3 1/2 hour morning photo sessions, four 2 1/2 hour afternoon photo sessions, four lunches, and after-lunch image review and Photoshop sessions. To ensure early starts, breakfasts will be your responsibility. An so that we can get some sleep, dinners will be on your own.

A $599 non-refundable deposit is required to hold your slot for this IPT. You can send a check (made out to “Arthur Morris) to us at BIRDS AS ART, PO Box 7245, Indian Lake Estates, FL, 3385, or call Jim or Jennifer at the office with a credit card at 863-692-0906. Your balance, payable only by check, will be due on 10/11//2018. If we do not receive your check for the balance on or before the due date we will try to fill your spot from the waiting list. Please print, complete, and sign the form that is linked to here and shoot it to us along with your deposit check. If you register by phone, please print, complete and sign the form as noted above and either mail it to us or e-mail the scan. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me via e-mail.


san-diego-card-b

Variety is surely the spice of life in San Diego. Click on the composite to enjoy a larger version.

Getting Up Early and Staying Out Late

On all BIRDS AS ART IPTS including and especially the San Diego IPT, we get into the field early to take advantage of unique and often spectacular lighting conditions and we stay out late to maximize the chances of killer light and glorious sunset silhouette situations. We often arrive at the cliffs a full hour before anyone else shows up to check out the land/sea scape opportunities.


clarkes-x-western-grebe-hybrid-courtship-rush-_r7a3968-lake-hodges-san-deigo-ca

This image was created in San Diego, CA with the Induro GIT 304L/Mongoose M3.6-mounted Canon EF 500mm f/4L IS II USM lens, the Canon Extender EF 1.4X III, and the simply amazing, astounding, mega mega-pixel Canon EOS 5DS R. ISO 500. Evaluative metering -2/3 stop: 1/2500 sec. at f/6.3 in Av mode. AWB.

61-Point (Automatic selection)/AI Servo/Shutter Button AF as originally framed was active at the moment of exposure (as is always best when photographing moving subjects). Though the optimized image above was a healthy crop from the original the result was a high quality 148+ MB 16-bit file. Click on the image to see a larger version. The AF system selected two AF points, one above the other, between the two birds;the eye of the bird on our right is razor sharp.

Clarke’s X Western Grebe courtship rush

The Dancing Grebe Add-On. FRI JAN 25, 2019: $399.

Those registering for the 2019 San Diego IPT might wish to join me for the Dancing Grebe Add-On Morning as above. Please read the details carefully. You will need to wade at least mid-thigh deep with your tripod over an uneven bottom. Lightweight chest waders are advised. Long lenses are needed; a 100-400 will not cut it at this spot, even with a TC. Chances at this location (easily accessible from the IPT hotel), vary from day to day so there will be no guarantees. But when those grebes dance, it can be an amazing rush. We may also enjoy chances to photograph both species, Western and Clarke’s Grebes, at fairly close range.

Help Support the Blog

Please help support my efforts here on the blog by remembering to click on the logo link above each time that you shop Amazon. That would be greatly appreciated. There is no problem using your Prime account; just click on the link and log into your Prime account. With love, artie

If In Doubt …

If in doubt about using the BAA B&H affiliate link correctly, you can always start your search by clicking here. Please note that the tracking is invisible. Web orders only. Please, however, remember to shoot me your receipt via e-mail.





Please Remember to use my Affiliate Links and to Visit the New BAA Online Store 🙂

To show your appreciation for my continuing efforts here, we ask, as always, that you get in the habit of using my B&H affiliate links on the right side of the blog for all of your photo and electronics purchases. Please check the availability of all photographic accessories in the New BIRDS AS ART Online Store, especially the Mongoose M3.6 tripod head, Wimberley lens plates, Delkin flash cards and accessories, and LensCoat stuff.

As always, we sell only what I have used, have tested, and can depend on. We will not sell you junk. We know what you need to make creating great images easy and fun. And please remember that I am always glad to answer your gear questions via e-mail.

I would of course appreciate your using our B&H affiliate links for all of your major gear, video, and electronic purchases. For the photographic stuff mentioned in the paragraph above, and for everything else in the new store, we, meaning BAA, would of course greatly appreciate your business. Here is a huge thank you to the many who have been using our links on a regular basis and those who will be visiting the New BIRDS AS ART Online Store as well.

Facebook

Be sure to like and follow BAA on Facebook by clicking on the logo link upper right. Tanks a stack.

Typos

In all blog posts and Bulletins, feel free to e-mail or to leave a comment regarding any typos or errors. Just be right :).

6 comments to Not An Easy Bird …

  • Hey Arthur, Image #1 shows the species the best, very nice profile of the bird. Image #2 is more interesting it is showing the feeding behavior. Image #1 is my favorite. Love how the bird is leaning forward on the rock.

  • avatar juan Tolentino

    I love the first image Artie. I didn’t know my monitor was 3D!

  • avatar Dennis Lane

    I also agree with Jay on the points mentioned in the original questions. I would ask this as question, #4 which of the two images would you want to make a print of? For me and I think many would pick #1 is a great portrait shot but it also shows action in it’s preferred habit during migration. Like all of us animals we seek nourishment, just like this Whimbrel.

  • avatar James Saxon

    I agree with Jay on all three points.

  • avatar Elinor Osborn

    Totally agree with Jay.

  • avatar Jay

    #1: Which image best shows the species? Why? Image #1. It gives you the full view of the bird. You can see the shape and size of the bill, its marking, and those great blue/gray legs and feet.

    #2: Which image is more interesting? Why? Image #2. Nice shot showing bird behavior.

    #3: Which image is your favorite? Why? Image #2. Showing bird behavior is more interesting than a nice portrait.