I was out shooting yesterday morning before dawn, working the early ebb and flow of a low tide on Lake Pontchartrain in the hour before the sun would come up. Long exposures, tripod, electronic cable release and flashlight. I was comfortable and happy as I worked through the compositions that I was encountering, in my element, shooting the early morning ethereal beauty that was the reason I had gotten out of bed in the first place.
But the shore birds had other ideas.
For some reason on this morning, the herons and other long-legged creatures that fish for breakfast in the early morning had decided I was not a threat, and continued to stalk their morning breakfast right up close to where I was trying to work….hell! It’s hard to pass up great wildlife opportunities, even if what you’re working on is something else entirely. Eventually I gave in, slapped on a 70-200mm zoom, upped my ISO and paid some respectful attention to the white heron you see here.
It’s funny how we can walk out the door with one idea and encounter something else entirely! I actually made a couple of images that have real possibilities before this heron insisted on some attention. It was a joy to watch though: even at 1/2000th of a second and an 8 fps motor drive, the lightning-fast move that this bird could make when zapping some prey was almost too much for my super-duper camera (Canon EOS 1D Mark IV) to capture.
Decisive moment, indeed!
Hi, I’m Andrew Boyd, a.k.a. The Discerning Photographer, and I hope this post has been interesting and informative. Please leave me a comment about it, let me know what you’d like to see more of on the site! You can also sign up for email delivery of all future articles or my RSS feed. Thanks!–DiscerningPhotog