Snowy Owl - I Spy With My Little Eye . . . !
Taken in the morning on my last Snowy Owl session of the season.
This Snowy Owl bobs and weaves his body and head as it tries to look past me to focus on some distant object. In this case, it was another Snowy in the same field over 1 kilometre away!
The Snowy then suddenly tookoff to escort and chase away the other from his territory. The Snowy then landed at the edge of his territory to stand guard for a long period of time against his intruder.
Before posting this photo, a friend remarked that there were five distinct neat layers of foreground and background: snow, vegetation, trees, mountain and sky.
Canon 5D Mark III with my 500L f4 lens offhand @ 1/1000, f13, ISO 400.
Snowy Owl - Don't Fence Me In
Snowy Owl - Extreme Dusk
The ball of the sun had just set behind the horizon for about 5 minutes before I managed to get this non-crop shot off.
The ability for the Canon 5D Mark III to get great low-light shots is amazing. I was only at ISO 1250, 1/750 with +3 exposure compensation. Offhand using my 500L f4 lens. What a combo.
I did punch up the contrast and cloned away one bad dust-bunny - that's all! The background magenta colours were as is, as witness by a friend that was with me.
Some bird-photo purists will complain that the tip of one wing is clipped. That's okay, this is my photo and not theirs :- )
Rock Me Baby - Snowy Owl
There are some scenes that you just can't pass up.
The uncovered portion of the rock conveys the passage of strength to the Snowy's powerful liftoff. The pyramid formed by the snow-covered rock leads the eye directly to the main subject of the photo - the Snowy.
Due to a setting sun situation where the background was already in the shadows due to high tress blocking the light, the almost black-brown and white look of the photo, the "white" Snowy stands out without other colour distractions to the eye.
Canon 5D Mark III with the 500L f4 lens offhand @ 1/1000, f4.5, ISO 400, + 1 exposure compensation. Cropped a bit for composition purposes and leveling of horizon.
With the overnight rain and quickly-melting snow, my season with my valued feathered friends has come to an end for this season. But, as you can imagine, I have a good archive of unpublished photos to keep my site updated in the future.
This species above all others gives me the most pleasure being with for study, photography, the challenges with at times extreme cold and personal well-being.
Snowy Owl - Two-Point Landing
The Snowy Owl 2014-2015 season in my area is rapidly coming to a close.
The owls will soon be migrating back north - they have to be on site for mating towards the end of April, and I'll be giving my poor wrecked knees a good rest.
March in Quebec City has been very cold, and we recently had two good back-to-back snow falls which did not melt, which probably extends the owls' stay. The Snowys still have a nice snow cover in the fields to entice me to go out after them.
Today, there was a veil of clouds, which prevented me from getting the setting sun with its magnificent light that I so much love. Also with the cloud cover, the colours were muted to a more dull pastel look. This was late afternoon, so on top of that, the cloud cover reduced the normal intensity of light making the image darker.
I had two options in formatting the photo - keep it pastel, or add a bit of contrast and saturation to boost the overall look so that it pops out more. Either one would have looked good - just different. Although my camera saw the scene as dull pastel, my eye on site saw it more as my interpretation here.
Canon 5D Mark III with the 500L f4 lens offhand at 1/1000, f/11, ISO 800, +1/2 exposures compensation. Slight crop for composition purposes. The sky and wood background blurred to reduce noise. Some dust-bunnies cloned away.
Snowy Owl - Sunset Touchdown
Great setting sun light for this shot.
Despite a reasonable temperature of -7C, the arctic-type winds blowing across the field put an unusual deep chill on the day's activities, but it was worth the discomfort.
Snowy Owl - I Stand On Guard For Thee
Basking in a golden late afternoon light, this Snowy appears as if performing sentry duty with the Royal 22nd Regiment at Quebec City's famed Citadel.
Canon 5D Mark III with the 500L f4 lens offhand @ 1/1000, f5.6, ISO 400, + 1 exposure compensation. Formatted vertically from a horizontal shot.
Snowy Owl - Moon Raker
Full-moon time again. Actually a day before the full moon with about 97.7% of the moon's illumination.
These moon shots take some planning ahead of time. Charts have to be consulted to find out date, times and direction that the moon rises. Then there is the work and chance of having both a Snowy and a moon at the same place at the same time.
To make things harder after all this planning and chance, you only have a couple of minutes to get your shoots before the moon is too high, and boy, does it rise fast! It doesn't always work, and you have to wait another year to try again :- )
And finally, because I use a 500mm lens, I can never hope to get both a close Snowy and the moon in focus. It's either one or the other because of small depth of field due to the long lens.
Snowy Owl - All Flaps Deployed For Landing
The title says it all!
Caught in a late afternoon setting-sun light.
Pole Vaulting Snowy-Style
An almost perfect V-form departure for a 9.8 score.
Canon 5D Mark III with the 500L f4 lens offhand @ 1/1000, f9.5, ISO 400, no exposure compensation.
Cropped to a vertical aspect from its horizontal original.
It's at times difficult to judge your distance from the Snowys for these take-off photos.
It's a balance of not being too close, to avoid the clipping of wings, or too far, so that you limit how large you can print the image due to resolution loss.
Peek-a-boo, I See You - Snowy Owl
Cute pictures of Snowy Owls don't always have to be on the fly.
Because of the structure of Snowy's eyes (their eyeballs can't move within their sockets like our eyes), they at times bob and weave their heads to accurately identify what they are trying to focus on.
Sunset Super-Stretch - Snowy Owl
Despite menacing cloud cover weather predictions for late this afternoon, the sky held out for me till sunset for today's outing.
This one of Ti-Beau (Little-Good Looker in French), was taken about 45 minutes before sunset.
And of course, the golden vegetation gives depth and contrasting colours to the image plus complementing the Snowy's eyes.
Canon 5D Mark III with the 500L f4 lens with the 1.4 Extender II, offhand as usual @ 1/1000, f9.5, ISO 400, + 1/2 exposure compensation.