Check out the vlog to go with this post: https://youtu.be/geT7-4MIhmA
I recently visited a local mountainside to spend an evening with a pair of kestrels I’ve noticed there. I did get some nice shots, but I also learnt some valuable lessons and had a surprise visitor to my raptor party!
These birds are so beautiful, I love watching them in their distinctive hover in the evening light. I was using my Canon 7D and a Canon EF 100-400 f4.5-5.6 IS which gave me an effective focal length of 640mm at full reach. I’d previously used my 5D MkIII with a Canon 1.4x MkII extender, but I think the extender in combination with the relatively poor aperture of the 100-400 was inferior to the 7D/100-400 configuration.
Only one of the kestrels seemed to be hunting, but he was really tolerant of me; running around in the short heather nearby before returning to his vole vigil.
Just as I was packing up, this guy appeared – seemingly very interested in my drone which I got out of his way in short order.
The red kite was also quite obliging and photogenic. Unfortunately I’d left my ISO in auto and I ended up with very noisy shots once I’d recovered the underexposed birds. Passable for Instagram and blogs, not so good for saleable prints! Lesson learned.