Sunday, February 24, 2008

First Sign Of Spring?

The Killdeer Returns

Although I have watched these birds since youth, I have not read a great deal about them. As a result I do not know if this is early for one to be in our area, but I was surprised to see one this morning in a small wetlands at the family farm. It was hopping about and occasionally found some type of food which it picked up with its beak and ate. It was 24 degrees at the time.

Canon XL-H1: 35-350L at 350mm

This seemed too far for the 500mm on the Canon 40D so I used the camcorder with the above lens. I estimate the range to be between 50 and 75 yards or 150 to 225 ft. I had more or less written this lens off for use with the High-Definition camcorders, but have been using it again lately and have been surprised with the results. This combination of lens and High-Def. camcorder doesn't compare to a DSLR for picture quality on still shots, but I doubt that it is possible for the DSLR to do this well on a small bird at that range, even with severe cropping. If I get another opportunity, I will test it and find out.

11 comments:

oldmanlincoln said...

I used to see these all the time along the edges of gravel roads but seldom see them now. I guess they are still out there but I am no longer riding a bike along country roads. Nice shot Willard.

Misty Dawn said...

I love watching these birds! From what I hear, there's a Prairie Chicken that comes around here every year - I'm hoping to get a photo of it.

Kerri said...

Wow Willard....I don't think I have ever seen one of these guys....I'm not sure if they frequent our area or not! Thanks for sharing this one!!! I'll have do some research now.

I think the shot came out great!!

Old Wom Tigley said...

We know these little fellows as Plovers.. never heard the tern Killdeer before.
Interesting about the lens..

Lilli & Nevada said...

I don't think i have seen one of these, they look a bit like a duck thanks for sharing

Willard said...

I did a little research and it is a species of plover,named killdeer because its cry seems to be saying that word. According to the book it winters regularly as far north as Massachusetts, Utah, and British Colombia, but I am certain this is the earliest I have seen one.

Andrea said...

What a beautiful sign of spring. I am ready for spring.

quintarantino said...

A lovely sign that Spring is here to come. Nice meeting the little "lad". As for your skills, I think I can only say: Great!

Old Wom Tigley said...

Thanks for the update information Willard.. I found the noise they make... and it dose sound like Kill Deer... I have also found out we do get these in Britain at times as well.
I live and learn. :O)

SHOOTING STAR said...

What a cute little guy! Nice photo;-) I like bird whatching! I think they are some lovely creatures!

Jeanie

lv2scpbk said...

I seen some robins yesterday. Another sign of spring. Yeah! Let's go spring!