Truland Photography

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

This Morning on Peebles Island

Another nice weather morning found me on Peebles Island with the 7D Mark II and EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS II USM lens. Rather than stand around at the eagle nest, I decided to walk around the island and shoot bracketed sequences for HDR processing, something I hadn't done with the crop sensor 7D Mark II.

While the 7DII is certainly capable of making some nice scenics, I guess the question is why would you? If it's your only body or if it's the only body you have with you are two such reasons.

One up side is hand held bracketing at the 10 frames per second continuous shooting speed. One down side is that, with the crop factor, lenses have a longer effective focal length than with a full frame body. This is good for wildlife, not so good for scenics.

70mm (112mm eq.)

70mm (112mm eq.)

70mm (112mm eq.)

262mm (419mm eq.)

70mm (112mm eq.)

106mm (170mm eq.)

Sunday, March 24, 2019

Peebles Island Bald Eagles

Conditions on Peebles Island were perfect for checking on the Bald Eagle nest this morning. Temperatures were below freezing over night so the trails were frozen for easy walking. It was sunny so ISO levels could be kept low and shutter speeds kept high.

The 70-300mm lens works well and while the quality is good enough for 100% crops for posting online, those files aren't really large enough for printing. I finally sold the Tamron 45mm lens and the current plan is to replace the 70-300mm lens with the cheaper of the two Sigma 150-600mm lenses.

If the lens comparison tool on The Digital Picture can be trusted, the Sigma is sharper than the Canon 70-300mm lens from 150mm to 300mm anyway. It is, however, larger, heavier and more expensive.

As I approached the nest viewing location, one eagle was on the nest and the other in a nearby tree. Then the one in the tree landed on the nest, the other eagle flew off and then both eagles were off the nest for about 12 minutes, flying around. Then one eagle returned to the nest, apparently incubating an egg or eggs. Here is the sequence of photos.

Saturday, March 16, 2019

White-tailed Deer and Bald Eagles

It's probably not surprising but whenever a new lens or camera body comes into your kit it seems that particular item is almost always chosen fur use until the novelty wears off. This has certainly been the case with the EOS 7D Mark II body I picked up last month. With the exception of one brief sunset I've not used my 5D Mark III bodies.

Yesterday and today saw the 7DII used for the purpose I acquired it, with the 70-300mm lens at 300mm. First, some backyard White-tailed Deer from yesterday. These are not cropped at all. The deer heard the shutter sound between the first and second shots. You can listen to the 10 frame per second shutter sound of the 7DII here. It slows down toward the end as the camera's buffer fills.

This morning I headed out to the Bald Eagle nest with the same setup. Apparently, sometime after last Friday (when the nest was empty) an egg or eggs were laid and are now being incubated. Now I have months of watching the nest to look forward to. These shots are 100% crops.

Monday, March 11, 2019

A Slow Start to March

It's been over two weeks since my last blog post and it's past time to get March started. But, while I've been shooting a bit here and there, no single outing warranted the space and effort. So, I'll combine a bunch of stuff into one post.

Continuing with the gear theme of the last post, I'm happy with the 7D Mark II decision although I haven't really had a chance to use it with any real intent. Here is what the eagle nest will look like with the 7DII and 70-300mm lens at a 100% crop.

Contrast that with an image from the same lens and one of my 5d Mark III bodies cropped to the same 1500x1000 resolution.

By the way, it's about time for the eagles to be incubating eggs on the nest. The 7DII photo was from Friday, May 8th.

My Photographer's Ephemeris app indicated that, from my usual vantage point, the sun would be setting behind the Peebles Island water tower on March 1st. Even though the sunset was not a good one I headed down to document it. Here is a shot with the 5D Mark III and 70-300mm lens at 200mm.

And, finally, here is the latest layout of my ThinkTank backpack with both 5DIII bodies and the 7DII. I picked up a Canon 50mm f/1.8 STM to use with the 24mm pancake lens on the 7DII with its built in flash for things like family gatherings, etc. And, my attempts to sell the Tamron 45mm lens not having born fruit, it's back in the bag.