It was early February when I took the following pictures, most of them birds and a little cute squirrel. Most of my pictures are with birds, especially in winter when there are no insects. That is also because in Denmark you can mostly find birds, few mammals and very few species of reptiles and amphibians. I am always in search of some Mustelidae but until now I could only find the escaped mink. Recently I’ve found out about a place where beavers were reintroduced so stay tuned to see if I would manage to find them or not.
February was a good month for seeing small raptors like the following Common kestrel (Falco tinnunculus). I had many encounters with the same pair that made their home at one edge of the lake. It is very hard to tell the difference between sexes when it comes to raptors so I have no idea which is the female, which the male. In this instance, the bird looked like it was shouting at something below it, but it was nothing there and what else it’s gesture means, I do not know. Because of the matrix metering mode I use, the camera calculated the correct exposure for the sky setting the auto ISO to 220 making my subject dark. The distribution of light also helped. I’ve used 1/2000 shutter speed and F7.1 for this picture.
Another raptor that kept showing up each time I visited the lake was this Common buzzard (Buteo buteo) with his awesome white winter plumage. Because of his white plumage was easy to spot when he was sitting in a green tree or one without leaves. I’ve learned his favorite resting spots and I was always looking for him, many times seeing this white spot in a mass of other colors. I guess he was waiting for the snow that never arrived this winter in Denmark. In this particular time, I saw him rest on the ground at one end of the lake, on a gray rainy day. He was quite far so the pictures are not the best and he saw me before I could get any closer. Because of the rain I have decided to enter the car, which was close, and with the window open wait for him to maybe fly closer. He didn’t come closer but I managed to snap this picture while he was flying over the reeds. In order to stop the motion, I have chosen 1/2000 sec. shutter speed and with F6.3 my auto ISo was raised to 1800 which introduced a lot of noise in the picture.
While I was sitting in the car, waiting for the buzzard to make a move, a Common Magpie (Pica pica) landed a few meters away from the car taking me by surprise. Because I was taken by surprise and the bird was in a hurry and didn’t spend too much time at the photo booth, I didn’t change the settings used to photograph the buzzard. So at F6.3 and 1/2000 sec. shutter speed, with those lighting conditions, the auto ISO was raised to 2800 coming with a lot of noise that had to be removed in post-processing. Luckily I was close to the bird so a good amount of details was preserved in the photo.
I had the cutest garden visitor in February, this Eurasian red squirrel (Sciurus vulgaris) that does not come too often or maybe I don’t see it because I don’t look too often through the window. He came to steal some food from the bird feeders set up by my neighbor. I took this picture through the window and on top of that the light was very low as it was a cloudy day so it’s a shitty picture, technically speaking, but I could not help sharing such a great event.
In the last post, I was asking you if you got tired of Eurasian blue tit (Cyanistes caeruleus) pictures… so here is one more. This ball of blue and yellow was sitting close to me through all those twigs, singing and I could not help but take some pictures of him. I can’t remember what I was trying to photograph when I stumbled across this little guy but my shutter speed for this picture was at 1/1600 sec. and I cannot explain myself why as I would have got the same image with 1/500 sec. maximum. In this case, the ISO was raised to the maximum set of ISO 3200 which could be avoided with lower shutter speed.
This last picture resembles a picture that I have in my head and that I’m looking after but is not quite there. I like looking at a group of Rooks (corvus frugilegus) and Western jackdaw (Coloeus monedula) to see their behavior and capture interesting interactions and compositions. In this case, I lay on my belly to get a low perspective and took some frames before the group decided to move. I am satisfied with the obtained composition and I will be certainly looking for something similar next time the crows congregate. For this shot, I used F6.3, 1/2000 sec. shutter speed and the auto ISo was raised to 560.
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For all species found on my spotting adventures, take a look at INaturalist.
The gear that I’ve used for spotting and book used for identification, here.