Random Photos Using SLR and Phone-scoping Techniques Over the Last Few Days.

Over the past few days, I have squeezed in a healthy amount of birding, giving the season and a life in retail!  It has been fruitful birding, too, and I posted daily highlights to our store’s Facebook Page for the complete story of recent birding outings.

I also took an unusual amount of photos for me.  I’m really not a bird photographer.  Instead, I call myself a “birding photographer.”  I even wrote an article for the recent Birder’s Guide to Gear from the American Birding Association about techniques of birding photography, from traditional digital SLR’s to phone-scoping.

In the past few days, I have employed both techniques to grab some photos while birding.  Some are better than others, and some are nothing more than “documentation” shots. In the shots below,  I employed either a Nikon D80 with a 300mm F4 lens and a 1.4x teleconveter, or a iPhone 4s coupled with a Zeiss Diascope T*FL 65 using a Phone Skope brand adapter.  Unfortunately, fairly thick cloud cover on both days impacted my lame photographing attempts.  Please remember to double-click the photos to get a larger image.

Yesterday, Luke Seitz, Maegan Krieger, and I met at Back Cove in Portland.  While waiting for their arrival, I spotted this Snowy Owl, and phone-scoped it early in the morning.
IMG_2125_SNOWatBackCove,12-19-13IMG_2121_SNOW_BackCove2,12-19-13

When we returned to the parking lot around 2:00pm, the day was marginally brighter, and the bird was significantly closer.  We used an excersize wall in the playing field as a very convenient blind, and I went to the SLR.
DSC_0025_SNOW1,Back Cove,12-19-13

Upon our arrival at Pine Point, this 1st-year Bald Eagle landed nearby.  I was without the SLR, so I snapped these photos using my phone-scoping system!
IMG_2141_1stCBAEA,PinePoint,12-19-13IMG_2148_1stCBaldEagle, PinePt, 12-19-13

We also found some good birds during the course of the day, including these treats at Grondin Pond: a 1st-winter Lesser Black-backed Gull and a male Gadwall – both of which were phone-scoped.
1stWLBBG,GrondinPond,12-19-13IMG_2161_GADW,GrondinPond,12-19-13

This morning, I visited the Hatch Hill Landfill in Augusta to study gulls, such as this rather dark 1st-winter Iceland Gull, which I phone-scoped on top of the hill.
IMG_2173_darkish1stWICGU,HatchHill,12-20-13

However, at least a dozen Bald Eagles of various ages were particularly active today, so I grabbed the SLR and fired away.  There was this 4th-year bird:
DSC_0050_4thCBAEA,HatchHill,12-20-13-best

And this interesting 2nd or 3rd year individual:
DSC_0053_2nd-3rdBAEA,HatchHill,12-20-13DSC_0051_2nd-3rdBAEA,HatchHill,12-20-13_edited-1DSC_0058_2nd-3rdBAEA,HatchHillLandfill,12-20-13

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