Tuesday 10 October 2023

Lens Test.

 After quite a long break due to many commitments, I managed a great day out recently with David. This gave me a chance to test out my latest new lens, a much lighter version of a 500mm that I hope to take away to Scotland soon, as dragging the heavy 300mm f2.8 up the mountains doesn't really appeal anymore.

With no unusual birds about currently in our area we decided on a trip to Rye Harbour, where at least we would probably see a few nice things reasonably close to the hides. As it was we had only just entered the first hide when a Little Egret walked past in front only a few metres away. There were also a couple of Little Grebe swimming very close. Just what I needed to test out the lens on both camera bodies.

Little Egret.

Little Grebe.

The next hide produced very little so we then moved on a bit further to the next hide. This one had the sun well and truly behind us. From here we had a lot more interest with several ducks and geese not too far away, although at one point a small flock of Wigeon were heading straight for us when another couple entered the hide that the ducks heard, so they then drifted further away. However, there were still enough activity to keep us happy.

Low Flying Cormorant.

Female Shoveler.


A small flock of Graylag Geese. The same photo but cropped differently as I can't decide which I prefer!!

We also had a sighting along the path of a couple of Magpie feeding on the head of a Sheep. Presumably finding some Ticks or other delights.

Magpie on Sheep.

A couple of days later, Lisa and I headed over to Petworth Park to see if the Fallow Deer had started to rut. Indeed they had, and that gave me another opportunity to try out the lens. Even though Petworth Park is open to the public, the deer are still cautious of people, and I guess we couldn't get quite as close as we would have liked. However, there were many bucks collecting up a harem of does and we both managed a few decent images.

I was particularly pleased with a couple of shots that showed intimate moments, one of a buck and doe touching noses in a very tender moment, and another with the doe looking up admiring the bellow the buck was giving.

Who said that venison wasn't tender!!
 A beautiful, very tender moment.

Collecting up the does.

A young Buck on the run.

Fallow Buck.

We then finished off the day at Arundel WWT where we had a distant view of a Kingfisher. Although a long way from my best Kingfisher shot, I was quite surprised how well the lens coped considering the distance, and that the lighting was far from perfect.


I'm now hoping to have some fun with the lens up in Scotland in the near future, and I find some creatures a little bit different to my usual fare.

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