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Sometimes Shorter is Better

For most folks who enjoy photographing wildlife in general, and birds-in-flight in particular, having additional ‘reach’ with their gear is always preferred. I was out yesterday morning attempting to capture some Purple Martin in flight and came to the realization that sometimes shorter is better.

I’ve visited the Purple Martin colony at Ruthven Park in Cayuga Ontario a number of times in the past with very little luck getting any usable images.

shorter is better 1

NIKON 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 211.6mm, efov 571mm, ISO 800, 1/4000, f/5.6

Like many photographers I was typically too aggressive in terms of the focal length I was trying to use.  It is a good strategy to try to ‘fill the frame’ with a subject bird, but that’s of little use if one can’t keep the bird in the frame long enough to acquire focus on it. Suffice to say that my previous attempts to photograph Purple Martin in flight ended up producing next to nothing to show for my efforts.