Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Migrating Bald Eagles

I thought I'd share a few more of the images I took during those 2 days of shooting migrating Bald Eagles in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho over New Year's.  By now, the only Bald Eagles that are likely still left in Coeur d'Alene are the ones that are there year-round.
In this image of an eagle in flight, I took while on the Eagle Watching Cruise we took one afternoon, the catch was successful but hard to see in this image.  I was just happy to get a decent image from the boat.
Some of my favorite images are environmental ones of the eagles or any wildlife in their natural surroundings, whether temporary or permanent.  This one below wasn't such a challenge to capture; no moving boat or cold, shaking hands, no waiting for hours.  We were driving next to the lake and I saw this eagle perched on this branch.  We pulled over and I got out, shot a few frames and then moved on.  Simple, compared to the eagle fishing shots.  I love this image!
It was pretty cool seeing so many bald eagles at once.  As we looked around we would see trees like this with many eagles in them.  There are 7 in this image, including the 2 juveniles that aren't as obvious due to the fact that they don't have white heads or tails yet.  It takes 5 years for their heads and tails to become completely white
The image below was another pull over and shoot, shot.  What we like to refer to as drive-by shooting. lol  This eagle didn't mind my presence at all and just seemed to be so majestic.  They are majestic birds anyway, but this guy...up in the top of the tree staring at me and then all around was quite impressive.  It was a wet morning and you can tell by the way his feathers look.
What a wonderful time we had viewing and photographing these bald eagles.  Special shout out to my incredibly patient husband who waits with me for wildlife, even if sometimes it's in the car.  Thanks, honey!
Do you have Bald Eagles where you live?  Have you photographed them?  I'd love to hear your stories in the comments.  
For more Bald Eagle information CLICK HERE!

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Wildlife Photography is About Waiting

Much of wildlife photography is about waiting, sometimes for hours, in the cold and wind or even bugs and heat.  (I'm more a fan of cold and wind than bugs and heat) As a photographer you must wait for the wildlife to show up, for them to be in the right light, at the right angle, with the right background, for them to catch that fish, be close enough for you to capture it. When those things happen, you have to have all of your settings right for correct exposure or be able to change it as your tracking your subject, freezing or blurring action, your lens on panning or static mode, be sure to get that eye in focus or it's a failed shot, and more.  So many things must fall into place for that "winning shot". This is not that shot as many of the things did not come together in this shot, however some of it did and he did catch the fish. 
One thing I learned about photographing fishing birds in flight, after 2 days of standing in the cold and wind from sunup to sundown is that it's harder than it looks and I need a lot more practice.  This particular shot was taken from the boat of an eagle watching cruise out of Coeur d'Alene, hand held, so I'm happy to have it at all.  Standing on a moving boat in the cold and wind and sometimes freezing rain presents a whole other host of challenges.  Boy was it worth it though!  I hope I get to do it again next year.  In the meantime, I have a lot of practicing to do. LOL


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