Sunday, December 21, 2008

Common Kingfisher

Common Kingfisher at Kuala Baram, I heard it first and I saw it flitting about near a makeshift hut by a body of water near my usual beach haunt. Nice little birdie digiscoped with hi-iso on a fiddly (now I know why) oversized video head in dissappearing light by the beach. Best I could do with the opportunity presented to me.

I was glad I left photography and birding for a while back in 2001-2004. The $30,000, 600mm pitfall seemed loomingly close, so I quickly switched to shooting with 50mm and vintage cameras and occupied the time with medium format. Birding was using the scope for the occasional oystercatchers, ducks and avocets, no pictures! Photography was 50mm, vintage cameras and black and white.

Now with waders, digiscoping, the marriage between telescopes and digi-cam seems ideal! It's only in situations like fast moving birds that don't sit still that sometimes you wish you could raise the bar on image quality just slightly so. Good technique helps, but sometimes all the odds are heavily stacked up against you. Id of far away birds is a synch, but making pleasing images is still an on and off thing. Sometimes you get it, sometimes you don't.

The $30,000 nightmare is coming back ....
Oh, the video head: it's fiddly because the thread from the Gitzo didn't go far enough inside the the head! Duhhh! Only noticed it when I unscrewed the head yesterday. Will test it out when I return from the December walk in January.

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