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Photographing Birds of Prey

Nigeyboy 9 823 United Kingdom
4 Feb 2011 9:13AM
Hi all

A neighbour and friend of mine has asked me to take some pics of him and his Harris Hawk. He wants some images of the bird in flight, catching 'prey' etc.

I have to say that I have never done this sort of photography, and would welcome any tips you may have. I have a 400D with a 17-70mm lens, but may be able to borrow a longer 200mm zoom.

Thanks all.


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4 Feb 2011 10:45AM
Suggest you contact Linda Wright (bzbee). She does photographs for ICBP at Newent (handily near me!) and teaches on their photography days.
Nigeyboy 9 823 United Kingdom
4 Feb 2011 12:46PM
Thanks for the tip - have sent a PM.
4 Feb 2011 6:51PM
You will probably need a longish lens to get close enough, and very good light, If I was using a 400 D, I would try AIservo mode with high frame rate, using center focus point, TV mode 1/1600 shutter speed, and then up the ISO to what you are comfortable with, if you are struggling because your aperture is too small, you could try centre weighted metering, and If that fails try shooting in manual setting or reduce the shutter speed slightly.


This was taken with an old mark 1 200mm f 2.8 L, if you can borrow a fast aperture 200mm then it will help with the autofocusing speed
User_Removed 8 4.6k 1 Scotland
5 Feb 2011 7:29PM
A bit of blur at the extremity of the wing tips adds to the overall effect of the shot. Yes - a 70-200 or 70-300 lens is about right.

But, by far, the most important factor is either to avoid photographing the jessies or removing them afterwards in PS. Nothing looks more horribly fake than the photo of a bird of prey with "unnatural" appendages trailing from a leg.

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