Monday, 15 June 2015

Like a Bird on a Wire ...

... yes, but in this case it's a Duck on a Fence. Surely not what Leonard Cohen had in mind when he wrote his famous song.


I spotted it on a fence alongside a footpath in Devon: a drake Mallard. Thinking that it would surely fly away as I approached, I started taking photos early on and continued as I walked closer. In fact it did not move and my photos got bigger and bigger!


In the end it just muttered to itself as I walked slowly by. So much for my dramatic "launching into the air shot".

A few years ago I came across a Mallard on a thatched roof in France. I am perhaps thinking of doing a series entitled "Ducks in Strange Places". What do you think?

 
(By the way, and just while I think of it, if you have scratched your camera lens, scroll down to the bottom to see the results of my little experiment.)

It was quite a good day out actually, it started just after dawn with this Barn Owl hunting over the fields - admittedly in rather dull light.






 And here it is with some prey, a Short Tailed Field Vole.


I also made the acquaintance of this confident little Reed Warbler singing its socks off in a reed bed.


Not to be outdone, this Reed Bunting was also singing at the top of its voice.


Later this Kestrel hovered briefly overhead.


No more photos for a few days as I will be without my favourite camera lens from now on, the Canon EF 400mm F4 DO IS. I am trading it in for the upgraded version 2. Quite sad to pack it into a box ready to send off, it has served me very well over the last few years so I can only hope that I will enjoy the new one as much.

Actually, on the subject of lenses, I conducted a little experiment. As I spruced up the old lens in an attempt to get the highest possible part-exchange offer for it, I noticed again that there were a few very fine micro-scratches in the blueish lens coating. This does not make any difference to the image quality at all. To prove it I took this photo:



Then, I removed the lens hood so that I could get close to the glass and held my index finger up right in front of the lens, partially blocking it, and took the picture below. I defy anyone to spot any difference. My finger was totally invisible in the final image. So much for worrying about micro-scratches!



So, that's it, just a brief blog for today. Please visit my website to see more at  www.johncrabb.co.uk
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