Author Archives: Diane

Continuous Shooting

As I, Diane, explained in the previous post, I like to watch animal behavior and pick the moment.  That said, there are times when continuous is the best option.  Like the antics of a zebra taking a dust bath.  Sometimes events happen so quickly (like seeing a cloud of dust that might have action) it’s hard to follow with your eye, let alone pick the moment. And there were many to choose from, a real bonus.

Zebra taking a dust bath.
© 2017 Diane Kelsay

Bob writing, now… I was crouching on the edge of a cliff where puffins are flying in from the sea with little fish to feed their young in burrows very close to where I am standing, but also spread out along at least a kilometer of cliff edge.  Birds were coming in from the sea in a steady stream.  They knew where their burrow was, but I didn’t.  As they approached the cliff edge, they would suddenly pivot and fly parallel to the cliff, looking for an opportunity to land at their burrows.  They fly like little bullets.  From the time they make that turn to the time when all you can see is the backside is a matter of 5 to 10 seconds.  One has to “lock on” to focus as they approach, follow the turn, and then make a batch of continuous releases.  Assuming your follow focus holds (and it does more often than not with current technology) you’ll get to pick from several images.  If you get really lucky, like I did in this image, the puffin will make one more turn toward you to land at a nearby burrow.  Then instead of a sideways image, you get more of a head-on shot!

© 2018 Bob Harvey

 

It’s important to build your skills at recognizing and capturing unique moments. There are times when your eye can’t follow the speed of the action and continuous exposure is a great too.

Botswana, Fish Eagle coming in for the catch.
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

The next frame on continuous!
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Alaska Bears – who gets the next salmon?
© 2018 Bob Harvey

Zebra wars
© Bob Harvey

Understand that there are times when you are in a quiet place and rapid fire could disturb the wildlife and/or your fellow travelers, causing you all to miss the shot.

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Ecuador Bird Photography

Last post I talked about birds eating.  Late morning my senses started kicking in, and I was ready for lunch. Our guide told me to watch the Velvet-purple Coronet that just came into the adjacent trees.  He said that after he lands, his wings go out for a second.  Ok, I’ve got this!  He lands on a branch right in front of me.  I missed.  I changed to manual focus, focusing on his favorite spot on the branch.  That works – nice wings, no head.  Then nice head, no wing action.  Then nice branch, no bird.  Out of the corner of my eye, I see the picnic table behind me – wow, what a spread!  Is that a platter of avocado slices?  My tummy rumbles.  Guide says “incoming”.  “And why don’t you just put it on continuous?” This is a game between us.

Velvet-purple Coronet sitting on the branch.
© 2019 Diane Kelsay

Finally the next shot is a winner and not on continuous. But then I get another one as he takes off, motion in the wings. This one is my favorite. Bob and I both got several good “on the branch shots”. Lunch was incredible.

Velvet-purple Coronet taking off.
© 2019 Diane Kelsay

When is it a good idea to pick your shot or use continuous? I do occasionally use continuous when I think it’s beneficial, but I mostly use single shot because I like to study my subject and try to capture the moment. I enjoy watching as much as shooting. I really liked “the look” in the second toucan photo.

Plate-billed Mountain Toucan
© 2019 Diane Kelsay

Plate-billed Mountain Toucan
© 2019 Diane Kelsay

We will help you learn when to use continuous and one-shot bird photography on our next Ecuador Birds Adventure.

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Ecuador Bird Photography

Some birds seem to play with their food.

Pale mandibled Aracari – playing with food? This catch was tossed about for a few minutes.
© 2019 Diane Kelsay

© 2019 Diane Kelsay

Some birds eat early – meaning we have to eat breakfast VERY early to get out and catch this one.

© 2019 Diane Kelsay

And some will enjoy their favorite treats anytime – and need to, so they can keep that energy up.

© 2019 Diane Kelsay

© 2019 Diane Kelsay

Join us in Ecuador for exciting bird photography.

See details here

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Ecuador Bird Photography

Gorgeous morning, just ate a delicious moth, what better time to take a bath!

Masked Flowerpiercer
© 2019 Diane Kelsay

Masked Flowerpiercer
© 2019 Diane Kelsay

Masked Flowerpiercer
© 2019 Diane Kelsay

Masked Flowerpiercer
© 2019 Diane Kelsay

Keep watching for more bird photo posts.

Also, consider joining our next group for fun bird photography.

See the details here  

 

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Belize Scout Trip

In April we (Bob and Diane) went to Belize to scout new and exciting experiences.  We explored and photographed new trails, caves, butterfly gardens, Mayan sites, new lodges and more to add new experiences to our Belize and Guatemala Adventures.  We found great new opportunities and can’t wait to share them.  Some areas had no other people – we had trails and caves to ourselves.  Thanks to our guides who helped with lighting.

© 2019 Diane Kelsay
Bob Harvey and the guides

© 2019 Diane Kelsay
Bob Harvey and the guides

© 2019 Diane Kelsay

Trail to the cave
© 2019 Diane Kelsay

New trail in a favorite old place.
© 2019 Diane Kelsay

Collared Aracari
© 2019 Diane Kelsay

Black orchid, national flower of Belize.
© 2019 Diane Kelsay

Russet-naped Wood-Rail
© 2019 Bob Harvey

Russet-naped Wood-Rail
© 2019 Diane Kelsay

Pale-billed woodpecker
© 2019 Bob Harvey

Fox
© 2019 Bob Harvey and Diane Kelsay

Dancing Lady orchid
© 2019 Diane Kelsay

© 2019 Diane Kelsay

© 2019 Bob Harvey

© 2019 Diane Kelsay

Wren
© 2019 Bob Harvey

Red-throated Ant-Tanager
© 2019 Bob Harvey

We explored a new area of caves, limestone grotto, forest and artifacts.  I asked our guide what the Spanish word was for grotto (which best explained the area) and apparently there wasn’t one.  His description included the word bosque and something about the limestone, so I named it The Stone Forest.

© 2019 Diane Kelsay

© 2019 Diane Kelsay

© 2019 Diane Kelsay

© 2019 Diane Kelsay

© 2019 Bob Harvey

White-collard Manakin
© 2019 Bob Harvey

Link to our Belize and Guatemala Photography Adventure

 

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Cloudforest Birds of Ecuador

Ecuador 2018 – After much encouragement from our trusty mainland guide in Quito, we explored the cloud forests seeking new wildlife and scenery photo options. His relative, the most noted birding guide in Ecuador, was our guide.  We were amazed at the wealth of experiences we had and filled cards like crazy with colorful birds and cloud forest scenes and critters.

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

© 2018 Bob Harvey

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

© 2018 Bob Harvey

© 2018 Bob Harvey

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

© 2018 Bob Harvey

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

© 2018 Bob Harvey

© 2018 Bob Harvey

© 2018 Bob Harvey

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

© 2018 Bob Harvey

From the cloud forest, we explored the Paramo for mountain vistas and the world’s largest hummingbird.

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

© 2018 Bob Harvey

© 2018 Bob Harvey

Link to our Ecuador Birds web page.  2019 is full, but we still have space in 2020!

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Botswana Adventure 2018

Botswana 2018 – First visitors in March – We arrived just as the lodges opened up for the season.  Everything was green and full of life.  And the photography from the river was outstanding. We had great angles and access to the action.

Elephants heading for the water and mud along the banks of the Chobe River.
© 2018 Bob Harvey

© 2018 Bob Harvey

How great they look after their mud bath.
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Malachite Kingfisher – nest is in the riverbank.
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Fish Eagle
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Crocodile giving “the look”
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Hippo, also giving “the look”, but definitely looking for trouble!
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

The salad bar
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Heron Fishing
© 2018 Bob Harvey

Saddleback Stork fishing
© 2018 Bob Harvey

Lesser Jacana
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Not a sunset! Midday clouds with prisms –  zoomed in tight with 500mm. NO saturation added.
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

A short plane ride later, the interior – also green and full of life.

Wild Dog – Looking cute?  You should have seen the pack chasing an impala! I couldn’t believe how fast the impala ran and how high he jumped. (he won)
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Little lion cub coming over to us to see if we would play.
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

He sat down and looked adorable.
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Then he showed us he could look ferocious!
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

He managed to wake up dad from his nap (who shoved him away)
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Finally, family play time.
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Carmine Bee-eater.
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Southern Red Bishop
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Baboons
© 2018 Bob Harvey

Serval
© 2018 Bob Harvey

Fish Eagle
© 2018 Bob Harvey

Zebras
© 2018 Bob Harvey

Me and my mom and the Oxpecker.
© 2018 Bob Harvey

Join the fun on the next trip to Botswana, March 2021.  Link to our Itinerary

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Iceland Adventures 2018

Iceland November 2018 Wildbunch Adventure – November is the time when there are very few hours of daylight, but the angle of the sun is low and dramatic light is available longer.

Iceberg that was washed up on the beach.
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

It’s also cold enough that ice caves are available for exploration.

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

It’s a time when you might find the aurora borealis.

Milky Way with aurora
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Winter scenes can be very exciting with low sunlight. The blue in the icebergs become more saturated in cloudy light.

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Iceland July 2018 Adventure – July is a time when you can photograph all day and most of the night in daylight.  It’s a time when birds come to the island to nest. The scenery is vibrant green, and weather changes offer great photo opportunities.

Puffin bringing food back to the nest.
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Loons
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Macro inside an iceberg
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Glacier coming out of the fog
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

© 2018 Diane Kelsay

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Yellowstone Winter 2018

Post 2 – Scenery What can be more enchanting than sparkling snow and the cool colors of winter. Snow also simplifies an otherwise busy landscape and adds a new creative element.

Fog from hot steam meeting cool air at Mud Volcano
© 2018 Bob Harvey

© 2018 Bob Harvey

Norris Geyser Basin
© 2018 Bob Harvey

Canyon
© 2018 Bob Harvey

Yellowstone Falls
© 2018 Bob Harvey

© 2018 Bob Harvey

West Thumb
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

West Thumb
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Bacterial mat
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Sunrise on Madison River – great to be the first ones in the park for dramatic light.
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

 

Join us next January!  Link to Yellowstone Winter Photography Safari

 

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Yellowstone Winter 2018

Post 1 – The Wildlife – great wildlife opportunities this year.  Wolves for all of our 3 tours.  A coyote’s prize – a goose?  Wow, that was a special moment! And of course the bald eagles were always nearby waiting for the leftovers.

Wolf
© 2018 Bob Harvey

Wolves
© 2018 Bob Harvey

Wolf on the bison kill
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Wolves resting after the feast
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Wolves
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Bald eagle hovering over the kill
© 2018 Bob Harvey

Coyote on the prowl
© 2018 Bob Harvey

And the feathers went flying
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Bison with early morning frost
© 2018 Bob Harvey

Fox sneaking behind us while everyone was watching for wolves
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Otter, Yellowstone River
© 2018 Bob Harvey

Elk crossing the Madison River
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Bald eagle
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Time to hide the food!
© 2018 Diane Kelsay

Coming soon – Post 2, scenery.

 

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