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Peregrine Falcon V.S. Whimbrel and other recent shots

Posted by Liron on Thursday, October 2, 2014
I had a great day of birding at Boundary Bay on September 27 2014. In addition to seeing lots of good species such as Red Knot, American Golden-Plover, Greater White-fronted Goose, Cackling Goose, Horned lark (flock of 45!), my first Snow Goose of the year, two Whimbrel and more, I also managed to get great photos of many birds.

It was the morning at the Boundary Bay, and I had already seen a variety of good birds. The list of good birds went higher when I spotted two Whimbrel flying around. They landed, and I decided to try to go in for a photo. I began stalking, but before I got close enough a Peregrine Falcon appeared out of nowhere. The two Whimbrel took off, but the falcon saw them and flew right at them, snatching one out of mid-air. It flew straight towards me, and I shot like crazy. The Peregrine Falcon landed, hidden in the grass, but all of a sudden the Whimbrel exploded out. It escaped, and flew off in the direction its partner had flown. The Peregrine Falcon did not go after it and flew off, probably looking for a different meal. This was quite the sight to see! Here are some photos that I got:

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Here are record shots of the Red Knot and American Golden-Plover. It was the second time I had seen these birds, but the first time I have found them by myself. They are needles in a haystack, usually hanging out with Black-bellied Plover flocks with at least 200-800 birds. These flocks are extremely difficult to approach so photos are very difficult. In this case finding the golden-plover was fairly easy as it was only with a couple dozen birds, but as I began to get closer many hundred more black-bellied plovers flew in and I didn't see the golden again.

American Golden Plover record shot
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Red Knot record shot
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Here are a few more recent photos from around the Lower Mainland:

Franklin's Gull - Vancouver - September 22 2014
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White-throated Sparrows - QE Park - September 18 2014
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Black-bellied Plover - Boundary Bay - September 17 2014. It took 1.5 hours of lying motionless in the mud for these birds to come close enough for photos, but it was worth it!

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Steller's Jay in flight - backyard setup - September 16 2014. Getting these birds in flight is much easier said than done. I thought it wouldn't be too hard to get a flight shot, but it ended up taking quite a while to get this shot, which I am very happy with! They come in very fast (way too fast for even the fast autofocus on my lens) and it is unpredictable where on the setup they will land. After a while of trying however, I managed to get this shot!

The light was not very good so I ended up having to use a very high ISO (4000). Next step is to try to get this shot when there is some more light so I don't have to set the ISO so high.

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Sanderling, Black Turnstone, Black-bellied Plover, Surfbird - Iona South Jetty - September 14 2014. Not often you see all these birds up on the same rock!

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Ash-throated Flycatcher - Boundary Bay - September 14 2014. Although I have seen this bird about five times now (every time I have recently been at Boundary Bay) I never get tired of seeing it. Here is a shot from the first time I saw it, the day after Nick found it.

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Thanks for looking! :) September was a great month of birding and photography for me.




 

 

 

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