This article shares a number of photographs of small birds flying with food at Hendrie Valley. All images were captured handheld with an Olympus OM-D E-M1X using the Pro Capture H mode.
It is not uncommon for photographers to feed subject birds or use pre-recorded calls to attract them. At Hendrie Valley many of the small birds are accustomed to humans feeding them peanuts and various types of bird seed.
During a recent visit I set an objective of capturing birds flying with food in their beaks. I found that the best way to accomplish this was to concentrate on individual birds that were more skittish than others. They would dart in. Momentarily stop. Grab a seed or nut. Then quickly take flight.
To capture these images I needed to very quickly get a single AF point on the subject bird. Immediately half depress my shutter to acquire focus and start my Pro Capture run. Then fully depress the shutter once the bird took flight. As you can imagine the action was a bit frantic at times.
The following photographs are a sampling of the images I was able to capture.
NOTE: Click on images to enlarge.
Here are some nuthatches flying with food…
And some woodpeckers flying with food…
And finally some chickadees flying with food…
The more that I use the Pro Capture H mode on my Olympus OM-D E-M1X the more that I find myself in total awe of this technology. It allows me to set bird photography objectives for myself that are both challenging… and surprisingly, very attainable.
Photographs were captured handheld using camera gear as noted in the EXIF data. All images were produced from RAW files using my standard process.
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