Red-tail Hawk with Prey

Copyright ©2016 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Warning!: Some may find these images too graphic!

While birding a couple of weeks ago in the Sacramento Valley we spotted this Red-tail Hawk having lunch on a levy about 25-30ft away from us.  It spotted us too.  It didn’t like the way we kept staring while it was trying to eat so…
Red tail Hawk with meal

…it picked up its meal…

Red-tailed Hawk with Prey in Flight

…and flew to a tree stump that offered a bit more privacy.

Red tail with prey on tree stump

We watched it eat for a couple of minutes then slowly drove away leaving it to enjoy its meal.

The second image with the Red-tail in flight has a bit of motion blur. I was hand-holding the lens and not used to its weight and think it was me being a wobbly rather than a slight pan.  The eye is pretty sharp, and the blur gives it a sense of movement I like enough to save, and share it.

I was also racked out to 500mm and I didn’t frame up the shot giving the bird enough room to fly out of the frame, so I extended the canvas a bit then added in some of the background to give the bird some room to fly out of the frame, and fix the composition.  There’s a learning curve to  all new lenses; getting used to the weight, and bulkiness -it’s a chubby lens, and framing with it will be what I strive to master in the coming years.

I liked the lens so much I bought one right after I returned the rental lens.

Nikon D300s| Nikkor 200-500mm VR (rental lens)| Lexar Professional Digital Film| PS CC 2015

More to come…

Monochrome Madness 2 20/52 Osprey

Copyright ©2015 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

This image I made back in May while out looking for Dancing Grebes. This Osprey is looking at its nest where its mate and chicks were.

To see the other images that were submitted this week click over to Leanne Cole’s Monochrome Madness 2 page here!

Nikon D300s| AF-S Nikkor 300mm f4 + Tamron 1.4x TC = 420mm| Tripod| Hoodman STEEL Ultra High Speed Digital Film| CS6Silver Efex Pro 2

White-tailed Kite

Copyright © 2012 Deborah M. Zajac. All Rights Reserved.

This photograph is one I took at last month’s Pacific Flyway Festival.  It’s a week-end event for birders out on Mare Island in the San Francisco Bay Area.  Several hikes, and guided tours with experienced birders are offered. I went with a group of folks, and my friend Dali out to Skaggs Island for a private walk-about. It’s part of an old Navy base which is being renovated and rehabilitated to marsh land.
This Kite was perched in a tree just within range for me to get several shots of it before it flew away. I was so excited to be this close to one that didn’t fly away the moment it spotted me. They’re so skittish they perch far away from the roads, or they take flight as soon as they see me coming.
The day was overcast, and the sky was flat so I decided to turn this one into a “high Key” shot.

Nikon D700| Nikkor 70-300 @ 300mm| f7.1| 1/1600sec| ISO 500| Manual Mode| Tripod

“Everybody, get on the floor, let’s dance! Don’t fight the feelin’, give yourself a chance! Shake, Shake, Shake! Shake your booty!” KC and the Sunshine Band

Via Flickr:
Copyright © 2012 Deborah M. Zajac. All Rights Reserved

Nikon D300s| Nikkor 70-300mmVR@ 300mm| f5.6| 1/2000 sec| ISO500| Manual Mode| Hand-held from a car window- Auto-Tour

Gliding in a Cloudless Sky

Copyright © 2012 Deborah M. Zajac.  All Rights Reserved.

Nikon D700| Nikkor 80-200mm @ 200mm + 1.4x TC | f8| 1/2000 sec| ISO 800| Manual Mode| Tripod  I spent part of the time shooting him in manual focus. With the TC on my Auto-Focus would hunt from time to time and I found it faster just to manually focus. I was changing from AF to MF  I don’t know if this was MF or AF. Must find that in my Metadata.

Please click the photo to view it large. It looks blurry at this compressed size.

Cooper’s Hawk or Bird on a Wire

Copyright © 2012 Deborah M. Zajac. All Rights Reserved.

The Copper’s Hawk that I saw in my neighbor’s tree back in late Jan. was on the power lines in my back yard this evening!
I grabbed my camera and hoped he was still there.  While I was viewing the playback he flew away and I missed the “in flight” shot. ARG!
I was so excited to see him, but he must be here because there is a pair of nesting Mourning Doves nearby. I suspect he’s after the chicks. I hope he comes back so I get a flight shot, but I don’t want him to get the chicks!

Nikon D700| Nikkor 180mm f2.8 @ f4.5| 1/640 sec| ISO 200| Manual mode| Hand-held

Prendre la fuite!

Copyright © 2012 Deborah M. Zajac. All Rights Reserved.

On the way home from Monday’s birding and photography day this Red-tail landed in a small field by the highway to catch a ground rat or something. Theresa quickly pulled over, but before the car had stopped I started shooting, and the hawk hearing the car and tires crunching the gravel took flight!

In play back I thought the motion blur made a cool impressionist piece.

Copyright © 2012 Deborah M. Zajac. All Rights Reserved.

Nikon D700| Nikkor 70-300mm VR @300mm| f8| 1/80 sec| ISO 640| Manual Mode| Hand-held