I mounted the new 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G on the D90 for the first time on Monday, and after taking a number of shots that evening I was a bit more "dialed in" as to what I might expect from it. Last night I took it out to see how it would do on some wildlife shots, and in short order found our local herd of Rocky Mountain Elk out grazing in a local field.
These Rocky Mountain Elk are relatively large animals, with weights ranging from about 300 lbs. for the cows, and up to 700 lbs. for the mature bulls. Bulls generally are around 5' at the shoulder. I am guessing that the big fellow shown below would be in the 500-600 lb. category. As a reference, the elk in these pics were anywhere from 100-150 meters away.
This herd is "local", and has been growing steadily for the past decade, and my best estimate is that there were about 40 present last evening. In just a few weeks they will enter their "rut", or breeding season, and the larger "herd bulls" will be out battling one another for the rights to lord over the cows. The rutting season is an intense time, and in years past I could usually find them to observe the battles. Hope to again this year and get some good images of them in battle.
Here are a couple of the better images from last evening. I took over 50 shots, and all but a few came out well. The third pic (solo her bull) is a bit grainy as it is a 100% crop, and the light was fading. I *think* I should have increased the ISO a bit for that one, as he was a long was off at the very back of the field. (Would gladly welcome any suggestions regarding getting a better image under those conditions, as this will be a regular shoot for me until late Sept.)
1/40s f/6.3 at 70.0mm ISO 200
Full sized original is much better: http://www.pbase.com/dizzygazer/imag...91180/original
1/80s f/6.3 at 250.0mm ISO 200
1/50s f/6.3 at 300.0mm ISO 0.7EV Under 200
1/20s f/7.1 at 300.0mm ISO 0.7EV Under 200
I don't have enough experience yet to know "good from bad", but based only the quality of images the lens produced last night I couldn't be any happier. I bought this lens with wildlife in mind, and hope to improve as I gain more experience.
1/2s f/18.0 at 70.0mm ISO 0.7EV Under 200
Here is one I shot quite late (near dark), but this young fellow wandered a little closer. and I couldn't resist trying, so I moved the ISO up to 1000, and took the shot:
1/40s f/9.0 at 300.0mm iso1000
Shot in RAW, with Processing and conversion done in Nikon Nx2.
Comments desired, and always appreciated. Thanks for any comments, or simply for just enjoying the photo's! .