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I spent a little time trying to capture hummingbirds in flight. Shooting these guys was like shooting skeet only a lot harder. They don't stay in one position very long, moreover, they do not give your auto-focus a lot to focus on. So all in all, I'm fairly pleased with the results of my first attempt. Now I understand the challenges a little better and hopefully I'll be more prepared on my second round with this squirrelly birds.

All photos were taken with my D800 using a Nikkor 70-300mm @ f-5.6 and 6.3, ISO - 400 and 800

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  1. Dave_W's Avatar
    Btw, I noticed that shrinking these images down has caused some of them to get a little grainy. I haven't noticed that effect in the past, I wonder if images loaded in the blog section are treated differently by the server than images in the forum section? Or maybe I just shrunk them down too much...?
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  2. Scott Murray's Avatar
    Great shots mate, looks like you are loving those fast little buggers
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  3. Carroll's Avatar
    IMO, you are doing an amazing job! I have been trying to capture Hummingbirds for 3 months, have taken hundreds of pictures, and only would show maybe a handful, and apologize for the quality of them!

    We had Hummingbirds for the first time this year, and they just left a few days ago. (This post writted 9-23-2012)

    Sadly, I think I even got a mediocre shot or two of a Hummer that seems to have its tail feathers gone, and also its feet. (Unless I am totally clueless about a particular Hummer)

    I realize you are using a D800 probably, I am curious as to what lens and settings you have had the best luck with, if you don't mind me asking?

    I am going to try again this next year, and get better prepared.

    I enjoyed looking at your Hummer pics.

    Carroll
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  4. Dave_W's Avatar
    Thanks Carroll - I'm using a 70-300mm lens with my D800. I think a lot of it was luck coupled with a very fast ISO of 800 and insuring the birds were in the sun when I tried to capture them which resulted in shutter speeds between 1/2000 to 1/4000 and I kept the mode on "A". The only "trick" I used was to keep the lens at 70mm while looking for birds and once found I would then zoom in to 300mm while keeping the focus point on them. It was easier than trying to find them with the lens zoomed and it also allowed the auto-focus to lock on so that it wouldn't have to search when I zoomed it in to 300mm. The rest of it was just dumb luck and being willing to take a bizillion photos in the hopes of getting one or two.
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  5. Somersetscott's Avatar
    Amasing photos! I love humming birds (I have some tatooed on the innerside of my upper arm - always a good idea when you're young ) thanks for posting your settings & kit too. I won't be seeing any in the wild here in the UK but I hear we do have a 'humming bird moth' over here i've yet to see.

    Keep them coming! there is a bird photo thread on here somewhere
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  6. Mis Adam's Avatar
    These are all so gorgeous I wish I had more here. I have two that before they leave pay a visit at the front picture window and tease my cats. other than that once in a while I see them in the apricot tree where they live all summer.
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