Shorebirds at eye level

July 16, 2013  •  Leave a Comment

These are ground-level photos of cute little least terns and other shorebirds in the background that I believe are dunlins (but could be wrong).  I saw these at Bolivar Flats across the ferry to the east of Galveston.  At low tide you can walk out on the damp sand to get to where the birds are resting and eating in the shallow water.

In my opinion this is the best photographic view of shorebirds - down low and at their level - instead of taking the pictures from up at normal human eye level down toward the sand.  With a telephoto lens at a wide aperture you get a narrow band of focus right where the bird is with natural looking blur in front and behind the subject as you can see in these shots.  These shots are right out of the camera with only some minor post processing done.

To do this easily, there is a device called a Ground Pod that is basically a frisbee shaped plastic disc with a camera mount in the center.  I mount the camera on a small ball head and attach the ball head to the ground pod which puts the lens about 6 inches off the sand.  Then laying on the ground behind the camera you can get some amazing shots.  Next time I'll post some more photos like these and get into more detail about how to do it.

www.kenbrennanphotography.com


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