Monday, February 18, 2013

Whiteheaded Largebird

Have you ever been so cold that your reproductive regions could be preserved for cryogenic science with no additional cooling required?  One of the great things about wildlife photography is the way in which you can experience abject misery for extended periods of time.

Take this weekend, for example: I stood within 40 yards of a whole convocation of bald eagles for an interval so extensive that whole life cycles of insects were taking place around me. Eggs were laid. Larvae hatched. Eventually these were able to successfully pupate and emerge as sexually mature adults. Temperatures were well below freezing. During this veritable epoch, a vast expanse of fog settled upon the wetlands obliterating all hope of anything resembling a successful photograph.

The day ended.  Total clicks of the shutter: Zero.  This is the part of wildlife photography that isn't always apparent - the time that is allocated to pitiable failure and adult language.

Dawn the following day brought identical conditions.  After a few hours, however, a rapid change took place  and suddenly the air was clear.  Light rained down.  Eagles flew.  Birder's Remorse faded.  Shutters clicked.

Gear Down

Image Details
Nikon D4
Nikon TC17EII
Nikon 400mm f/2.8 VR @ f/4.8, 1/1600, ISO 100

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