Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Further adventures in digiscoping

Mrs. Belted Kingfisher (Ceryle alcyon) came to the pond, so I tried practicing my digiscoping again. It didn't help that it started raining after the first picture.








The last one is especially blurry, but I couldn't help posting it anyway. How often do you see a Kingfisher yawn?

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Edited to add:
The Dharma Bums have Kingfisher shots posted today too!

17 comments:

Cuppa said...

Not very often! Great pictures. Thanks.

Sharfa said...

Wow! Love the pics. Amazing.

Hick said...

I like the yawning one. Why are these birds so hard to photograph? I think you've done a great job, but it seems these birds are harder to "catch" then some others that you have posted...like the Blue Herons?

Rexroth's Daughter said...

Great shots. I was out trying to photograph a belted kingfisher yesterday too! We happened upon it while walking along Port Townsend Bay. I did manage to get three photographs, but none quite as close up as these. They are definitely hard to photograph. Well done!

roger said...

nice pictures. do i understand correctly that you held the camera to the eyepiece of a digiscope? not that i'm so good at estimating distance, but could you hazard a guess as to how far away the bird was from you?

Rexroth's Daughter said...

I put up our post on the Kingfisher and linked to yours. It must be Kingfisher day on the internets!

Rurality said...

Thanks y'all.

Hick I don't know why they're so wary. I guess they're just not used to being around people much. Some birds get used to the comings and goings of people, and some just never do.

DPR we have a spotting scope and I'm holding the camera up to that. The scope is a good one - the limiting factor here is definitely the camera! I'm not sure of the distance... I'm lousy at estimating that. But I'm on the 20x zoom on the scope. There is a ton of vignetting on the resulting picture, so I crop it and these are 1:1 size I believe. No reduction. So you can see that the bird itself was fairly small in the whole of the original picture.

I hope that makes sense. I'll ask hubby later on how far he thinks it is to that spot. That rusty steel post is a favorite perching spot for birds!

Marie said...

My lord, it has a tongue. If only you had captured its teeth! Great shots because Kingfishers are such coy creatures.

Floridacracker said...

Back when I was a Ranger patrolling the marsh around Tybee Island, GA, there was a bluff on the Savannah River that was riddled with Kingfisher nest burrows. Until that time, I never knew they nested in that manner. Nice shots of a wary bird.

Ontario Wanderer said...

I got some information about the connectors for cameras and scopes the other day but decided to hang on to my limited money and continue hand holding the two together. That makes bird photos, etc. still a great challange. You've done wonderfully!

Rurality said...

Marie, I'm afraid they might be scarcer than hens' teeth!

FC when we first moved here there was a period of drought and we were able to walk down the creek bed and find some nest sites like that.

OW, me too. I don't think I'll spend $$ for the adaptor for this camera. The thought has crossed my mind to get an older Coolpix from Ebay just for digiscoping! Can't do it just now though.

yllstonewolf said...

i LOVE kingfishers. i LOVE that rattling "cup and saucer" kind of rusty noise they make. they are just plain not very people friendly. all i've ever had them do is dash away and scold me from afar. i guess this is the best shot i have gotten to date...
http://www.pbase.com/yllstonewolf/image/23897064
and it is not very good at all. i guess that should be my new quest - a good kingfisher shot. yours are great and full of personality - which these birds definitely possess! i love their little mud-cave nests in riverbanks, and how they just swoop down and come up with a wriggling silver fish. they're just cool!!

Rurality said...

Hey YW if you can't get an up-close-and-personal Kingfisher shot then I don't feel so bad! I'm going to go snooping further in your photo galleries... your shots are always so nice. :)

Good description of the sound - rattling rusty cup and saucer.

It was so funny to see this guy swoop down on the spilled dog food. Who would have thought?! I haven't noticed him coming back for more though, so he must not have liked it that much.

Trix said...

Great shots nonetheless! It must be kingfisher day; ours are acting up just now, and right after a heavy rainfall. I think they like the way things get stirred up in the lake.

Rhodent said...

GReat pictures! I have never seen one stay still for so many snapshots!

jenni said...

the yawn is so cute! i love the colors of its chest.

Rurality said...

Trix you're probably right. They're such good fishermen.

Rho right after it quit raining and I was composing my "masterpiece" - she flew off.

Jenni the female has that rust color, and the male lacks it. Unusual in birds, for the female to be prettier.