A few images from the February Spoonbills Tour

The first Spoonbills tour is now over and there is still space for the recently announced May 30-31 one! Send me an email at steven@stevenbirdphotography.com to book your spot 🙂 We had an amazing first morning this February, with almost record low tides, which allowed for close interactions while the birds are in the blue waters.

Roseate Spoonbills squawking - Photography Tour
Spoonbills squawking at each other – Tampa Bay Rookery
ISO 800 | f/8 | 1/4000 sec. | Manual mode | AI servo rear focus
Canon 600mm f/4 L IS II with 2x extender and the Canon EOS 1D mark II.

It was very nice to have the birds venturing further out from the shore! There were many opportunities for images surrounded by blue water: a very thrilling scenario.

Spoonbill portrait - Florida Photography Tour
Spoonbill with breeding colors portrait – Tampa Bay Rookery
ISO 1000 | f/8 | 1/2500 sec. | Manual mode | AI servo rear focus
Canon 600mm f/4 L IS II with 2x extender and the Canon EOS 1D mark II.

What a beautiful adult with breeding colors! As the birds came close, we had good opportunities for closeup portraits 🙂

Roseate Spoonbill preening - Photography Tour
Spoonbill preening – Tampa Bay Rookery
ISO 800 | f/8 | 1/4000 sec. | Manual mode | AI servo rear focus
Canon 600mm f/4 L IS II with 2x extender and the Canon EOS 1D mark II.

In the image above, you may see how one could easily enjoy creating photographs with either dark backgrounds or just the blue water, if you were to adjust your shooting angle properly. Detail that I made sure to call out to the group, so that participants would be aware of the different possible situations. In this case, the background is one third mangrove flats and two thirds blue waters.

Florida Ospreys Photography Tour – $1,490

March 28th-29th 2020 / limit 5 people – 1 opening

Florida Osprey Photography Tour

3 boat rides on a pristine cypress trees lake. Many nests are at eye level, allowing shooting from up close in a natural habitat. No big lens needed! An ideal setup for beginners… 2 working lunch sessions with lunch included. $300 deposit. Send me an email at steven@stevenbirdphotography.com to be added to the early contact list for 2021.

Florida Spoonbills Photography Tour – $1,390

February 22nd-23rd 2020 / limit 6 people – Full

May 3rd-4th 2020 / limit 6 people – Full

May 30th-31st 2020 / limit 6 people – 5 open

Florida Spoonbills Photography Workshop

2 working lunches and 3 boat rides to the absolute best rookery to photograph spoonbills with breeding colors. $250 deposit. Send me an email at steven@stevenbirdphotography.com to be added to the early contact list for 2021!

New Spoonbill Photo Workshop date: May 30-31 2020

Indeed, there will be one new date for a Florida Spoonbills photography workshop! May 31-31 2020, in the typical format: morning and afternoon shoots on Saturday, morning shoot on Sunday and two lunches with image critique and Photoshop image optimization sessions. Quickly send me an email at steven@stevenbirdphotography.com before it is too late 🙂

Roseate Spoonbill Photography Tour
Spoonbills displaying – Tampa Bay Rookery
ISO 640 | f/5.6 | 1/5000 sec. | Manual mode | AI servo rear focus
Canon 600mm f/5.6 L IS II with 1.4x extender and the Canon EOS 5D mark III.

The Tampa Bay Spoonbill rookery is certainly one of the very few spots where you might see multiple spoonbills with breeding colors interacting together.

Juvenile Spoonbill preening
Juvenile Spoonbill preening – Tampa Bay Rookery
ISO 2500 | f/8 | 1/1000 sec. | Manual mode | AI servo rear focus
Canon 600mm f/5.6 L IS II with 2x extender and the Canon EOS 5D mark III.

You are guaranteed seeing newly fledged Spoonbills in the open for the end of May tour. As you may see, they can be quite cute with a full head of feathers.

Roseate Spoonbills Photography Workshop
Spoonbills landing in the shallow waters – Tampa Bay Rookery
ISO 1000 | f/4 | 1/2500 sec. | Manual mode | AI servo rear focus
Canon 600mm f/5.6 L IS II and the Canon EOS 7D mark II.

The image above was created during an overcast day while the tide was especially low and the birds ventured further away from the mangrove trees. We will shoot under all weather conditions, to the exception of lightning…

Florida Ospreys Photography Tour – $1,490

March 28th-29th 2020 / limit 5 people – 1 opening

Florida Osprey Photography Tour

3 boat rides on a pristine cypress trees lake. Many nests are at eye level, allowing shooting from up close in a natural habitat. No big lens needed! An ideal setup for beginners… 2 working lunch sessions with lunch included. $300 deposit. Send me an email at steven@stevenbirdphotography.com to be added to the early contact list for 2021.

Florida Spoonbills Photography Tour – $1,390

February 22nd-23rd 2020 / limit 6 people – Full

May 3rd-4th 2020 / limit 6 people – Full

May 30th-31st 2020 / limit 6 people – 5 open

Florida Spoonbills Photography Workshop

2 working lunches and 3 boat rides to the absolute best rookery to photograph spoonbills with breeding colors. $250 deposit. Send me an email at steven@stevenbirdphotography.com to be added to the early contact list for 2021!

One opening left for the Florida Ospreys photography tour

Yes, due to a cancellation there is still one open spot for the very best Ospreys photography workshop! Join me on March 28-29 2020 for a one of a kind tour, where you may photograph Ospreys coming and out of their nests, at eye-level and in a pristine Cypress Trees environment. The natural environment is harder and harder to find nowadays with so many nests being set up on top of poles…

Florida Ospreys photography tour
Pair of Ospreys in flight
ISO 640 | f/5.6 | 1/2500 sec. | Manual mode | AI servo rear focus
Canon 600mm f/4 L IS II and the Canon EOS 1DX mark II.

Typically, the Florida Ospreys are in the top two of must photograph list from my clients. Not to disappoint, this is the best location at the best time of the year!

Osprey photography workshop
Osprey viewed from below
ISO 1000 | f/7.1 | 1/3200 sec. | Manual mode | AI servo rear focus
Canon 100-400mm f/5.6 L IS II and the Canon EOS 1DX mark II.

Ospreys are certainly the most accessible raptors to photograph. And yet, it is not that simple to find a location with the ideal shooting conditions.

Osprey in flight
Osprey hovering before a dive
ISO 1000 | f/8 | 1/3200 sec. | Manual mode | AI servo rear focus
Canon 100-400mm f/5.6 L IS II and the Canon EOS 1DX mark II.

We will be shooting from a pontoon boat, with plenty of space for everybody, while getting fairly close to our subjects. This is the ideal situation for beginner and mid-level bird photographers.

Florida Ospreys Photography Tour – $1,490

March 28th-29th 2020 / limit 5 people – 1 opening

Florida Osprey Photography Tour

3 boat rides on a pristine cypress trees lake. Many nests are at eye level, allowing shooting from up close in a natural habitat. No big lens needed! An ideal setup for beginners… 2 working lunch sessions with lunch included. $300 deposit. Send me an email at steven@stevenbirdphotography.com to be added to the early contact list for 2021.

Florida Spoonbills Photography Tour – $1,390

February 22nd-23rd 2020 / limit 6 people – Full

May 3rd-4th 2020 / limit 6 people – 1 open

May 30th-31st 2020 / limit 6 people – 5 open

Florida Spoonbills Photography Workshop

2 working lunches and 3 boat rides to the absolute best rookery to photograph spoonbills with breeding colors. $250 deposit. Send me an email at steven@stevenbirdphotography.com to be added to the early contact list for 2021!

Great Blue Herons at the Venice rookery

Are you looking for a rookery on the Florida West coast that is easy to access and where you do not need a long lens to shoot? The Venice rookery is one of the possible answers! Comprised mostly of Great Blue Heron nests, it has long been a must go place for many bird photographers. There is still one open spot for the March 28-29 Florida Ospreys tour due to a cancellation, send me an email to quickly secure the last opening!

Great Blue Herons at the nest - Venice Rookery
Great Blue Herons at the nest – Venice Rookery, Florida
ISO 2500 | f/4 | 1/2500 sec. | Manual mode | AI servo rear focus
Canon 600mm f/4 L IS II and the Canon EOS 1DX mark II.

I paid a visit to the Venice rookery at the very end of December. Nesting activity had already started and the morning was quite overcast, not to say a bit gloomy. While I usually adore overcast conditions around low tide waters, I find it less attractive at rookeries in general. In any case, rookeries can be deceptively difficult to shoot at for the fact that it takes a keen eye to eliminate the typical chaos going on there. I hence worked a lot on the most distant nest, which gave me a clearer backdrop and some take off and landing actions.

Anhinga - Venice Rookery Bird Photography
Female Anhinga perched on a log – Venice Rookery, Florida
ISO 6400 | f/4 | 1/1600 sec. | Manual mode | AI servo rear focus
Canon 600mm f/4 L IS II and the Canon EOS 1DX mark II.

The Venice rookery is not all about Great Blue Herons, and Anhingas are counted as part of the party. The one above was posing on a log, at a bit lower viewpoint than most photographers were looking at that day. Any bird on a branch or log with a nice diffused background behind is typically a win. My tip here is to have the tip of the log as part of the frame if possible.

Great Blue Heron - Venice Rookery Photography
Great Blue Heron scratching – Venice Rookery, Florida
ISO 800 | f/5.6 | 1/4000 sec. | Manual mode | AI servo rear focus
Canon 600mm f/4 L IS II coupled with 1.4x extender and the Canon EOS 1DX mark II.

Towards the very end of the morning session, the sun decide to half show up. I am looking forward to returning with sunny weather!

Florida Ospreys Photography Tour – $1,490

March 28th-29th 2020 / limit 5 people – 1 opening

Florida Osprey Photography Tour

3 boat rides on a pristine cypress trees lake. Many nests are at eye level, allowing shooting from up close in a natural habitat. No big lens needed! An ideal setup for beginners… 2 working lunch sessions with lunch included. $300 deposit. Send me an email at steven@stevenbirdphotography.com to be added to the early contact list for 2021.

Florida Spoonbills Photography Tour – $1,390

February 22nd-23rd 2020 / limit 6 people – Full

May 2nd-3rd 2020 / limit 6 people – Full

Florida Spoonbills Photography Workshop

2 working lunches and 3 boat rides to the absolute best rookery to photograph spoonbills with breeding colors. $250 deposit. Send me an email at steven@stevenbirdphotography.com to be added to the early contact list for 2021!

Happy New Year! Bird Photography at Fort Desoto

Happy new year to all!! May you have success, happiness, love and good health 🙂 Bird photography at Fort Desoto has long been a must repeat for me. Though, I have not gone as often in the recent years it remains a prime location for top bird photography if you know where to look. While the location has changed quite a bit, with the elimination of the big trees and the apparition of new large bands of sand, there is quite a diversity of subjects to go after. Note that there are still two open spots for the March 28-29 2020 Osprey tour. Would you like to join?

Black Bellied Plovers - Fort Desoto Bird Photography
Black bellied Plovers with winter plumage – Fort Desoto, Florida
ISO 640 | f/5.6 | 1/4000 sec. | Manual mode | AI servo rear focus
Canon 600mm f/4 L IS II coupled with the 1.4x extender and the Canon EOS 1DX mark II.

Above, two Black-bellied Plovers with winter plumage eating sea shells in the low tide. Fort Desoto remains a top location for shore birds if you know where to look for them. In my experience, many people (bird photographers included) tend to overlook shore birds activity so to prioritize larger wading birds. Yet, there is so much to capture from the “smaller” world.

Yellow-crowned Night Heron - Fort Desoto Bird Photography
Yellow crowned Night Heron – Fort Desoto, Florida
ISO 2000 | f/5.6 | 1/4000 sec. | Manual mode | AI servo rear focus
Canon 600mm f/4 L IS II coupled with the 1.4x extender and the Canon EOS 1DX mark II.

There are not that many good opportunities to photograph Yellow crowned night Herons during day time. While, not being as difficult as working with Black crowned Night Herons, you really need to keep an eye open for those. I was delighted to spot this one on the hunt, and not too close to the mangrove trees for once. The result is a nice diffused background in a captivating stance. For this shot, I had to lay belly down in the muck so to create the very low angle perspective 🙂

Snowy Egret in flight - Fort Desoto Bird Photography
Snowy Egret in flight – Fort Desoto, Florida
ISO 500 | f/5.6 | 1/6400 sec. | Manual mode | AI servo rear focus
Canon 600mm f/4 L IS II coupled with the 1.4x extender and the Canon EOS 1DX mark II.

Wings all the way down is definitely a stunning position for birds in flight. See the illustration with the above Snowy Egret. Having the bird flying close to the ground gives a fantastic sense of perspective in my opinion.

Florida Ospreys Photography Tour – $1,490

March 28th-29th 2020 / limit 5 people – 2 openings

Florida Osprey Photography Tour

3 boat rides on a pristine cypress trees lake. Many nests are at eye level, allowing shooting from up close in a natural habitat. No big lens needed! An ideal setup for beginners… 2 working lunch sessions with lunch included. $300 deposit. Send me an email at steven@stevenbirdphotography.com

Florida Spoonbills Photography Tour – $1,390

February 22nd-23rd 2020 / limit 6 people – Full

May 2nd-3rd 2020 / limit 6 people – Full

Florida Spoonbills Photography Workshop

2 working lunches and 3 boat rides to the absolute best rookery to photograph spoonbills with breeding colors. $250 deposit. Send me an email at steven@stevenbirdphotography.com to be added to the early contact list for 2021!

error: Content is protected !!
%d bloggers like this: