In late March I had a bit of time to experiment photographing geese in flight at 30 fps. I haven’t used this frame rate very much in the past, deciding it was time I spent an entire outing shooting at 30 frames per second.
At Hendrie Valley I spotted a pair of Canada Geese on the ice. As I watched them, it became apparent that they were getting a bit agitated and would likely take flight. So, I acquired focus on them and waited for my opportunity. Within a minute, the pair took off across the ice.
Since I was shooting at 30 frames-per-second my Nikon 1 V3 locked auto-focus and exposure based on the first frame of the run. The following images were all captured hand-held using a 1 Nikkor CX 70-300 mm f/4.5-5.6 zoom lens at 300 mm (efov 810 mm), f/6.3, 1/1600, ISO-450.
NOTE: Click on images to enlarge.
Out of a burst of 40 images created at 30 frames per second I was able to capture 10 photographs where the wings of the lead bird did not visually obstruct the trailing bird’s head.
If this same burst would have been captured at 60 frames per second, I may have just gotten Frame 20 at the very end of my run. I would have missed Frames 21 and 40. Using 20 frames per second would likely have made some of the images towards the end of the run potentially unusable as they could have had too much of a rear view.
Deciding what frame rate to use can be a difficult choice. In this case photographing geese in flight at 30 fps appears to have been a good decision.
All images were captured hand-held using camera gear as per the EXIF data noted in the article. All images in this article were produced from RAW files using my standard process of DxO PhotoLab, CS6 and the Nik Collection.
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