A little kestrel sequence

This is really the second part (or prequel) to yesterday’s post. Before heading to Rottingdean I’d been over at Sheepcote Valley in search of owls. No luck with them (though they are about). Instead I came across a kestrel who provided a brief but active sequence.

Kestrel at Sheepcote Valley, Brighton

Kestrel at Sheepcote Valley, Brighton

Kestrel at Sheepcote Valley, Brighton

Kestrel at Sheepcote Valley, Brighton

Kestrel at Sheepcote Valley, Brighton

I’m sort of running a day behind myself, but I will add this one from today. It’s a ‘Bravias arc’ or ‘upsidedown rainbow’ or ‘Smiley in the Sky’. It’s caused by light refracting on ice particles. They are related to ‘sundogs’ which tend to be vertical patches, but this was the first time I’ve seen an extended arc. The shot is taken with the camera pointing straight up to the sky.

Bavias arc or circumzenithal arc (also known as the Smiley in the Sky or Upsidedown Rainbow) seen over Woodingdean, East Sussex. The phenomenon is caused by a rare alignment of the angle of the sun with ice crystals in the atmosphere.

Camera note: all kestrel photos taken with the Canon 7D Mark II and EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM lens. The sky-smiley was taken with the EF17-40mm f/4L USM lens.

4 Comments

  1. derwandersmann December 29, 2016 at 4:55 am #

    The kestrel sequence is really fine, Paul … I find myself a little taken aback by the rainbow shot; I’ve never encountered the phenomenon before.

    • Words January 12, 2017 at 11:10 pm #

      Charles, I’d seen pictures of the inverted rainbow and occasionally the small vertical sundogs, but never anything as good as this.

  2. Darko December 30, 2016 at 3:45 pm #

    Like dW, I’ve never seen that phenomenon before. Very interesting, thanks for posting.

    • Words January 12, 2017 at 11:11 pm #

      Darko. they don’t remain for very long and it was sheer chance that I went outside and spotted it.