front yard birding

Using a bit of leftover birthday money, I bought some new camera equipment.  Nothing particularly sexy like a big long lens (what do you mean by homoerotic?).  I bought a set of carbon fiber tripod legs that weigh about 3 pounds instead of the 6 pounds of my old tripod legs – that should make hiking easier.  They can also hold more weight which is good since my biggest lens tops out what you should put on the old legs.  I also bought a new tripod head.  Instead of a ball head (ahem), I got a gimbal head that balances the weight of the camera so that you can easily point it anywhere and it stays put.  Moreover, the new head is far more stable than the old one when using long lenses.

All of the nerdiness aside, the real proof is in the pictures.  I took the camera outside over the weekend and put it on the new tripod to try to get some interesting bird pictures.   Thoughts?

Titmouse in flight
Yellow warbler
Yellow bellied sapsucker
new camera gear
new camera gear

The first is a junco – I took the picture with a 500mm lens with a doubler.  That combined with the camera’s internal 1.5x magnifier gives me 1500mm equivalent.  I could not have gotten this shot with my old tripod.

Second – chickadee on the birdfeeder (900mm equivalent)

Third/fourth – sh titmouse on the holly tree and flying off of the tree.

Fifth – unknown (at this time) bird [update: 1/13]  immature yellow warbler

Sixth – yellow-bellied sapsucker

Seventh/eighth – gear 🙂

All in all I’m very happy with the tripod and head.  It’s much stabler than what I’ve been using and has already let me take some shots I couldn’t take before.

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