Swallows Mating

This article features 8 consecutive photographs of two swallows mating, including the male bird approaching the female in mid-air. All images were captured handheld using an E-M1X, M.Zuiko 100-400 mm f/5-6.3 IS and M.Zuiko MC-14 teleconverter. Pro Capture H was utlized, with my standard settings for this technology.

Swallows mating is a brief affair (pardon my pun), as the coupling of the birds does not last very long. What the event may lack in duration is compensated for with frequency.

NOTE: Click on images to enlarge.

OM-D E-M1X + M.Zuiko 100-400 mm f/5-6.3 IS with M.Zuiko MC-14 teleconverter @ 280 mm, efov 560 mm, f/8.4, 1/4000, ISO-1250, Pro Capture H, cropped to 3390 pixels on the height, subject distance 5.2 metres
OM-D E-M1X + M.Zuiko 100-400 mm f/5-6.3 IS with M.Zuiko MC-14 teleconverter @ 280 mm, efov 560 mm, f/8.4, 1/4000, ISO-1250, Pro Capture H, cropped to 3390 pixels on the height, subject distance 5.2 metres
OM-D E-M1X + M.Zuiko 100-400 mm f/5-6.3 IS with M.Zuiko MC-14 teleconverter @ 280 mm, efov 560 mm, f/8.4, 1/4000, ISO-1250, Pro Capture H, cropped to 3390 pixels on the height, subject distance 5.2 metres
OM-D E-M1X + M.Zuiko 100-400 mm f/5-6.3 IS with M.Zuiko MC-14 teleconverter @ 280 mm, efov 560 mm, f/8.4, 1/4000, ISO-1250, Pro Capture H, cropped to 3390 pixels on the height, subject distance 5.2 metres
OM-D E-M1X + M.Zuiko 100-400 mm f/5-6.3 IS with M.Zuiko MC-14 teleconverter @ 280 mm, efov 560 mm, f/8.4, 1/4000, ISO-1250, Pro Capture H, cropped to 3390 pixels on the height, subject distance 5.2 metres
OM-D E-M1X + M.Zuiko 100-400 mm f/5-6.3 IS with M.Zuiko MC-14 teleconverter @ 280 mm, efov 560 mm, f/8.4, 1/4000, ISO-1250, Pro Capture H, cropped to 3390 pixels on the height, subject distance 5.2 metres
OM-D E-M1X + M.Zuiko 100-400 mm f/5-6.3 IS with M.Zuiko MC-14 teleconverter @ 280 mm, efov 560 mm, f/8.4, 1/4000, ISO-1250, Pro Capture H, cropped to 3390 pixels on the height, subject distance 5.2 metres
OM-D E-M1X + M.Zuiko 100-400 mm f/5-6.3 IS with M.Zuiko MC-14 teleconverter @ 280 mm, efov 560 mm, f/8.4, 1/4000, ISO-1250, Pro Capture H, cropped to 3390 pixels on the height, subject distance 5.2 metres

Capturing photographs of these swallows mating was quite easy as the male bird coupled with the female multiple times. The male’s approach and actually landing on the female was the difficult part as this portion of the action sequence happens extremely quickly. I managed to capture two approach sequences successfully. The 8 images in this article were captured in a total of 0.133 seconds.

Using Pro Capture H technology for this type of action sequence is ideal. It allows a photographer to capture small differences in wing/body positions that happen very rapidly as the male bird makes his mid-air approach and couples with the female.

Technical Note

Photographs were captured hand-held using camera gear as noted in the EXIF data. Images were produced from RAW files using my standard process. All images were cropped to 3390 pixels on the height. I used my standard Pro Capture H settings for small birds with my Pre-Shutter Frames and Frame Limiter both set to 15. I used a frame rate of 60 frames-per-second. This is the 1,023rd article published on this website since its original inception.

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4 thoughts on “Swallows Mating”

  1. Well done, these are great images. Just shows the speed of the interaction if using Pro-Capture H.
    I am happy with my use of the 100-400 it is really good in good light but I’m not up to your standards.

    1. I’m glad that you enjoyed the images Jerry!

      I’ve also being enjoying my M.Zuiko 100-400 immensely. The size, weight, teleconverter compatibility, and performance are ideal for my needs.

      Tom

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