Tag Archives: Black Headed Gull

Cormorant and Gulls

I spent a couple of hours this morning at Falmer Pond. I wasn’t expecting much (I was really planning just to test out some new gear), but on arrival I spotted this beautiful cormorant perching on a rock at the edge of the water.

cormorant

Cormorant at Falmer Pond, East Sussex

I think I may have been disturbing a private moment though…

cormorant defecating

Those were both taken with the 100-400 lens, but I was interested in getting familiar with my 500mm lens and a new tripod head (Flexline). The beauty of the Flexline is that you set it up so that the horizon is always level, even when you start moving the lens around. And even better, the lens doesn’t creep! This won’t mean much if you’ve not used tripods, but ‘creep’ is a big issue and means constant alignment and readjustment with most systems. Anyway, the remainder of the shots here were taken with the longer lens, from a tripod. Using the Flexline was a delight.

A couple more of the cormorant…

cormorant

Cormorant

I did some gentle tracking (very easy and very smooth), including several shots of juvenile herring gulls.

juvenile herring gull with fish

Herring gull at Falmer Pond with fish

juvenile herring gull splashing

A bigger splash

The second species of gull at the pond is the black-headed gull, though most of them have now lost their chocolate brown breeding plumage and simply display a dark facial spot.

Black-headed gull at Falmer Pond, with fish

Black-headed gull at Falmer Pond, with fish

black-headed gull on rock

Back home the foxes were in and out of the garden this afternoon, including a visit by Pretty Vixen.

fox

Pretty Vixen

Camera note: all photos taken with the Canon 1DX Mark II and EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM lens or EF 500mm f/4 IS II USM lens.

Cormorant and other fine birds at Falmer

A major thunderstorm passed across the South of England last night. Whether it’s coincidence or not, I don’t know; but a cormorant turned up at Falmer Pond this morning, and stayed for the day. It’s been a long time since one has pitched up at the pond, but it seemed set for the duration and was happily swimming up and down searching for fish.

Cormorant

Cormorant

Cormorant

Cormorant

It was nice to have one of the more interesting species back at the pond, but the gulls were also putting on a good display. This is a juvenile herring gull taking off from the water. Tracking this kind of movement has become a whole lot easier with the 7D Mark II. It really is incredibly responsive.

Herring gull

Herring gull

I’m really happy with the 7D Mark II, and am getting used to the multiple ways of setting up the autofocus. I sincerely doubt I’d have caught this final shot of a black-headed gull staring down the camera with the previous version.

Black-headed gull

The one irritation at the moment is that Lightroom won’t process the Raw files from the Mark II. No doubt an update will appear, but for the moment my work-flow has become: upload and sort in Digital Photo Pro v4.0; convert to TIF and download; upload TIFs to Lightroom; edit; download TIFs; upload TIFs to Photoshop; edit and convert to sRGB; download as JPG file. It’s slow, but it works!

Camera note: all photos taken with the Canon 7D Mark II and EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L USM IS lens.

Grey Day

Just one photo from today… some black-headed gulls swooping for food.

Motion blur black-headed gull

Camera note: taken with the Canon 7D and EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L USM IS lens. Shutter speed was 1/13s, aperture f/6.3, ISO 200, focal length 260mm.