Steppe Grey Shrike

October 11, 2014  •  Leave a Comment

I love Shrikes, I really do. Today I elected to spend four hours in the car to go and see one, and whilst that part of the day was pretty boring other than the selection of quality tunes, the part which involved the bird more than made up for it. I wanted some properly good shots, so why on earth I didn't take my tripod I am unable to fathom, especially as I knew I would be using the 800mm, more than likely with the teleconverter. But no, like a fool I went armed only with a monopod - I think my recent trip to Shetland has made me overconfident. There, I went handheld for most of the trip, but that was with the 500mm which is a completely different proposition. And with today's Steppe Grey Shrike, I did indeed resort to the 1.4x, and so had to use my best monopod technique to try and get some sharp images at what is an unhealthy focal length - 1456mm in old money. And that's before you factor in any heat haze! Fortune was perhaps on my side though, as there was some nice light cloud cover which kept the worst of this at bay, and the bird was very obliging in terms of staying in the same place for extended periods of time, as focusing isn't always straightforward with this combination. Happy to say it worked out....


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