Lorna's sister Anita and her husband John have been staying on South Padre Island the past month so we have visited the Birding Center more often than in the past. We went down yesterday for a last visit. While Lorna and Nita did sister things I went birding.
Earlier this season I bought a new camera body, a Nikon D5500, which is described in reviews as "entry level". That may be, but it's entry level is definitely higher than the camera it replaces and it was reasonably priced as it has been officially obsoleted by the D5600. I have a 55-300m zoom, decent for close to medium distance shots, but it cannot reach way out so sometimes I have to crop the hell out of distant shots and the quality is compromised. All that said, it is light enough to be easily carried.
Some of my earlier shots were noisy so I have been playing around with settings. As a result I am using aperture priority at about F16 for stationary or slow moving shots, and shutter priority at 1/1000 sec or more for flying shots. Ideally I would change the focus and metering mode for each situation, but there is rarely time, and I am NOT a photographer, so I have come up with compromise settings which work - sort of. :-)
There are a pair of ospreys at the center, sometimes they fly over, usually they don't. Today they did. These are 6 foot pictures, they look okay from 6 feet away, much closer and they get a little fuzzy.
|Bufflehead (f.) and Mottled Duck (m.), just to show size variation in duck species.|
|Lorna being helped by a Great-tailed Grackle|