Galapagos Day 6/Morning, Elizabeth Bay, & Safe on Long Island « Arthur Morris/BIRDS AS ART

Galapagos Day 6/Morning, Elizabeth Bay, & Safe on Long Island

Galapagos Day 6/Morning, July 11: Elizabeth Bay

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This Bryde’s Whale image was created with the Canon 70-200mm f/4L IS lens (hand held at 129mm) with the EOS-1D Mark IV. ISO 400. Evaluative metering +1 stop: 1/1000 sec. at f/8. I used the lowest focusing sensor in the middle to get the whale down in the frame just as I do with small in the frame ducks. The bird are Galapagos Shearwaters. If the wind had been in the opposite direction the birds would have been flying in the same direction as the whale was swimming. Alas.

Our morning at Elizabeth Bay was a magical one filled with penguins, a single Bryde’s Whale, thousands of Galapagos Shearwaters, and a few Brown Pelicans and Blue-footed Boobies. We were pretty much surrounded by volcanoes. The sun peeked through two layers of cloud just as we approached the penguins; very high ISOs were needed due to the low, sweet, yellow light. There was not a breath of air so once the sun disappeared the misty, foggy conditions heightened the sense of magic and mystery. Juan put us in good position to photograph the whale several times but unfortunately it never fed on the surface as it had done spectacularly the previous evening when it had been simply too dark for photography.

We thought that we had finished our morning off with another snorkel in frigid waters, this one with large schools of Peruvian Grunt and about twenty Pacific Green Sea Turtles. As we all boarded the panga we saw (and soon smelled–and I mean smelled!) the whale blow. Juan tried to position the panga close enough to the whale so that we could get back in the water and swim with it. Part of me hoped that he would succeed and part of me–the very cold part–hoped that he would not. He did not. The last time that we saw the whale it surfaced at the corner of the nearby islet in the exact spot that the panga had picked us up from just fifteen minutes before….

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This Galapagos Penguin was photographed at 6:14 am with the handheld Canon 400mm f/4 IS DO and the EOS-1D MIV. ISO 2500. Evaluative metering plus 2/3 stop: 1/500 sec. at f/4 in Tv Mode with ISO Saftey Shift enabled to ensure the chosen shutter speed.

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As I was making the image above, I noticed this penguin pair resting on gorgeous red rock so I had Juan move the panga into position. This image was created at 6:20 am just as the sun began to fade behind a fog bank. I used the same gear as for the previous image: ISO 2000. Evaluative metering -2/3 stop: 1/320 sec. at f/5.6. This image was optimized by Robert O’Toole who did a lot better with the color than I did. Thanks Robert.

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Galapagos Shearwater had been lumped with Audubon’s Shearwater until it was recognized as a separate species several years ago. With the uneven patterns of the upperparts this bird is likely an immature. I created this image with the hand held Canon 400mm f/4IS DO lens with the EOS-1D Mark IV. ISO 500. Evaluative metering +1 stop: 1/800 sec. at f/6.3. The 400 DO is a great tool to use when you are photographing from a boat.

Safe on Long Island

I am laying on the couch at my Mom’s home in Holbrook, Long Island (having flown from Orlando to Islip yesterday morning. I am spending time with my younger sister Arna and with my younger daughter Alissa and her kids, my northern grandkids). All the while rooting for Tiger in the PGA. I will be getting out to photograph tomorrow morning and then most days after that at Jamaica Bay WR and Nickerson Beach until I head back to Orlando on August 25th. Have lots of private day clients and an IPT. 🙂

Shopper’s Guide

Here is the gear that I used that afternoon at Urbina Bay:

Canon 70-200mm f/4 l IS lens
Canon 400mm f/4 IS DO lens
Canon EOS-1D Mark IV professional digital camera body
Canon EF Teleconverter 1.4X II

If you are considering the purchase of a major piece of photographic gear be it a new camera, a long lens, a tripod or a head, or some accessories be sure to check out our Shopper’s Guide.

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