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Thread: Rainforest Photography

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Default Rainforest Photography

    Hi all,

    This may have been better posted in the techniques forum, sorry if that is the case.

    I am hoping to get out Friday morning for a bushwalk in the local rainforest here (if its overcast I wont bother as it will almost be pitch black in some parts!) and am hoping to better my poor photo efforts last time (which was over a year ago back when I not long had a dSLR). Birds that will likely to be seen, or possibly seen are:

    Woompoo Fruit Doves
    Superb Fruit Doves
    Rose-crowned Fruit Dove
    Emerald Pigeon
    Noisy Pitta
    Topknot Pigeons
    Brown Cuckoo-Dove
    Grey Goshawk
    Spectacled Monarch
    White-eared Monarch (if I am lucky)
    Grey Fantail
    Fairy Gerygone
    Fantail Cuckoo
    Eastern Yellow Robin
    Grey Shrike-Thrush
    White-browed Scrubwren
    Buff-breasted Paradise Kingfisher
    etc

    Should see a fair percentage of these all going well. However, I am tossing up between taking the big 500 f/4 with tripod, flash (580 EXII) and better beamer with the 7D, or having exactly the same set-up substituting the 500 for the 100-400 or 400 f/5.6. Flash will probably act as the main light a lot of the time. Obviously the wider aperture of the 500 will help, but not sure how much given the lack of light? The 100-400 or 400 f/5.6 will obviously be a lot less strenuous to hike around with! I will probably shoot manual with SS fixed at 1/200s or thereabouts and a FEC of around -1 to -2. I have not done this very often, so any advice on settings would be invaluable. I dont have a TTL cord for the flash yet, so am going to give the 7D's wireless flash a go and see how it performs. Not sure how successful I will be with photographs, but at least it will be an outing

    Thanks,
    Dale
    Aust. Life List (IOC) - 315 (Rufous Owl- 11/09/2014)
    Dale Mengel Photography - a work in progress!
    Follow me on Facebook
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  2. #2
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Rainforest Photography

    Hi Dale,

    I would be taking the 100-400mm mate, handheld with your flash attached to the camera. I don't believe off camera flash is necessary with digital photography because red eye/steel eye can be fixed easily in post production. Your tripod will also be a hindrance in my opinion so I would suggest leaving it at home (or in the car at least). Around about 1/200th to 1/320th should be a good setting generally but give it a test before you start off. Keep taking shots as you go in and out of shadier areas to give you an idea of whether your settings are right.
    These are just my opinions, others may tell a different story

    Good luck mate, Paul 8-)

  3. #3

    Default Re: Rainforest Photography

    In my opinion and experiences I'd say go with the 100-400 as well.....one problem I find when trying to photograph birds in thicky wooded areas is all too often the birds are too close for the minimum focus distance of the 500 f4.
    Repost at will......Cheers from Colin

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Rainforest Photography

    Quote Originally Posted by seesee
    In my opinion and experiences I'd say go with the 100-400 as well.....one problem I find when trying to photograph birds in thicky wooded areas is all too often the birds are too close for the minimum focus distance of the 500 f4.
    Although I do not have a 500/4, I do have the 100-400/4.5-5.6. When shooting in the rainforest up at O'Reilly's, I often came across fellow birdos with larger prime lenses. The common complaint they voiced was that, when birds appeared out of the rainforest and were in a clear position to photograph, they were always inside the min. focussing distance of their lens.

    Edit Forgot to add, good luck on your phot. mission. Look forward to seeing the results.
    Cheers,

    George

    Life List : 481 (Southern Cassowary, Etty Bay, QLD, Oct., 2016)

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    Proserpine, Queensland
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    Thread Starter

    Default Re: Rainforest Photography

    Thanks guys, I will take the 100-400; my back and shoulders will thank me for it as well :P

    Hopefully the weather will be ok, although forecast not promising
    Aust. Life List (IOC) - 315 (Rufous Owl- 11/09/2014)
    Dale Mengel Photography - a work in progress!
    Follow me on Facebook
    Check out my Birding Blog

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