Untamed Images Blog

    Adventures in Nature Photography

    Browsing Posts published in April, 2012


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    An 'I'iwi pauses briefy while feeding on the nectar-rich blossom of the 'ohi'a lehua tree.


    Canon EOS-1D Mark IV, EF500mm f/4L IS USM +1.4x at 700 mm, 1/800 sec at f/5.6, ISO 800

    A critically endangered Palila feeds on seed pods of the Mamane tree.


    Canon EOS-1D Mark IV, EF500mm f/4L IS USM +2.0x at 1000 mm, 1/400 sec at f/11, ISO 800

    On several recent visits to Hawaii’s Big Island, Alison and I have made efforts to see as many of the endemic forest bird species as possible. With significant amounts of driving and hiking we have managed a fair degree of success. So, perhaps with an inflated sense of confidence, on a recent trip to the Big Island I brought my big lens and other assorted camera gear with the goal of capturing some of these tropical gems in photographs. While none of the target birds were particularly cooperative — most of the time either they remained hidden, stayed way up high in the trees, or moved constantly behind a tangle of vegetation — I was fortunate to create a few images that I consider “keepers.”
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    A male Pacific Golden-Plover (Pluvialis fulva) pauses briefly while hunting insects in Hawaii.


    Canon EOS-1D Mark IV, EF500mm f/4L IS USM at 500 mm, 1/640 sec at f/4, ISO 400

    Pacific Golden-Plovers are an abundant winter visitor to the Hawaiian Island. I photographed this male bird, still in its breeding plumage (note the black breast feathers), in the resort area of Mauna Lani on Hawaii’s Big Island. I felt rather silly lying on my belly on one of the manicured roadside lawns as countless tourists sped by looking at me quizzically, but having hauled my 500mm lens all the way to Hawaii I put my pride aside and went after this handsome plover. It took a few minutes for my subject to become accustomed to my presence, but once he did, he posed cooperatively between short sprints as he searched for tasty insects.

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