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Thread: Horned Grebe in Breeding Plumage

  1. #1

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    Horned Grebe in Breeding Plumage

    In another post I mentioned having to abandon the ages old wisdom of minimum shutter speed while shooting a bird. Well this is the guy.

    Another photographer told me there was a nesting pair of horned grebes at our local bird sanctuary. So I stopped by on my way to work yesterday and found them. He was diving to feed so the crest feathers aren't puffed up real well but still looks cool. Amazing difference in breeding plummage on the birds. You can see a comparison here.

    By the time the sum came over the mountain and lit things up, he was on his way back to the nest to share the catch. So most of the well lit shots that I got were from the same side of the bird.

    Nikon D7100, 300mm f4 w/1.4x TC, handheld
    1/2000s, f5.6, ISO 640

    Light BG.

    Horned Grebe in Breeding Plumage

    Dark BG

    Horned Grebe in Breeding Plumage

    Busted !

    Horned Grebe in Breeding Plumage

  2. #2
    terrib's Avatar
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    Re: Horned Grebe in Breeding Plumage

    These are beautiful photos, Dan. I like the 2nd slightly better (actually hard to decide) because I think I like the deeper, richer tones. The third shot is great as, with those feathers, he seems to have an imperious look. funny...

  3. #3
    jprzybyla's Avatar
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    Re: Horned Grebe in Breeding Plumage

    Beautiful images Dan, what a wonderful bird.

  4. #4
    kaneohebud's Avatar
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    Bud Ralston

    Re: Horned Grebe in Breeding Plumage

    Beautiful, Dan.

  5. #5
    Downrigger's Avatar
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    Re: Horned Grebe in Breeding Plumage

    These are very nice. So sharp, well composed. The reflections are so perfect in #s 1&2. And I like the great match between the background tones and the colors on the Grebe... one could hardly choose something as pleasing.

  6. #6

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    Re: Horned Grebe in Breeding Plumage

    Terri, I also like the colors in the second one but the straight on look in the third. This is one of the rare times that a bird shot works better with the bird looking straight at the camera.

    Thanks, Joe and Bud. It is a cute little bugger. It was diving and feeding on something that looked like large grubs about the size of the big green caterpillars that like tomato plants. Maybe 2-3 inches long with visible jaws.

    Thanks, Mark. The colors were indeed lovely. We've had a late spring so the bank of the pond is still lined with browns and tans. In another week it will be all green. So a whole new photo opp

    As is typical, things rarely work out perfectly. The reflection is tack sharp in the first image, the second has better BG/water color, and the third has the best position on the bird's head. Gotta go back if we get another sunny day....

  7. #7
    Brownbear's Avatar
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    Re: Horned Grebe in Breeding Plumage

    Beautiful, inspiring images... Number 2 is perfection... !

    I adore the head on view of #3. Looking forward to seeing more of your bird photos.

  8. #8

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    Re: Horned Grebe in Breeding Plumage

    Quote Originally Posted by Christina S View Post
    ...Looking forward to seeing more of your bird photos.
    Thanks for the kind comments, Christina. Just got back from a couple of days out on Prince William Sound. Took quite a few photos to cull through. Couple of decent duck images in there but mostly more sea otters. We had uncharacteristically sunny weather for two whole days

  9. #9
    Brownbear's Avatar
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    Re: Horned Grebe in Breeding Plumage

    My pleasure, Dan... Part of my learning process to improve my photography skills is to view photos from photographers that inspire me... So I am very much looking forward to your photos, and I adore your sea otters!

    Quote Originally Posted by NorthernFocus View Post
    Thanks for the kind comments, Christina. Just got back from a couple of days out on Prince William Sound. Took quite a few photos to cull through. Couple of decent duck images in there but mostly more sea otters. We had uncharacteristically sunny weather for two whole days

  10. #10
    FlyingSquirrel's Avatar
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    Matthew

    Re: Horned Grebe in Breeding Plumage

    Gorgeous work, Dan. That bird is amazing!

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