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Green Heron

Green Heron

Lost Gardens of Heligan, Cornwall, UK. 9 October 2010

This photo is the BirdGuides Photo of the Week (POTW) for 14 Oct 2010 and also a runner up for 2010 Photo of the Year (POTY)!

Canon EOS 50D, 400mm f4 DO lens & x1.4 TC. Exposure details: 1/50sec, f5.6, ISO 800.

We were spending a week in the far west of Cornwall when the news of this bird broke, so on our way back on the Saturday we thought we would call in to see if it was still around, arriving just after the gardens opened to the general public. On arrival at the pool where it had been seen the day before we were dismayed to find a lot of disappointed people around, as the bird hadn't been seen at all that day. Some had been there since about 7am. However after about an hour a report came through that the bird had been relocated at the first in the series of pools called the 'Jungle'. Everyone of course immediately rushed round there, and arriving at the back end of this stream of birders, the boardwalk which gave a good view of the pool was full to capacity already. However, by squeezing my way past to the middle and then sitting down I got a reasonable position, with the camera on its tripod pointing out between the gaps in the side of the boardwalk (which weren't wide enough to take the DO lens).

I took this shot very soon after arrival, and used the 2sec timer to try to get a sharp set of pics, given the awful light which resulted in an exposure time of 1/50sec (normally much too slow for good results). Fortunately this one came out quite well! Thereafter the scrumage on the boardwalk got worse, and my position sitting down became untenable. I took plenty more hand held shots, but none came out as well as this one.

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