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White necked Jacobin

White necked Jacobin

Hummingbird Gallery, Speyside, Tobago 24 February 2015
EOS 7D mk II & 400mmf4DO. 1/1000 sec f4 ISO 3200

In advance of our trip to Trinidad & Tobago, I looked online for info about hummingbird photography and was somewhat dismayed to find nothing but articles about usage of flash, including up to about seven high powered flash guns at once! As I have never even attempted flash for bird photos this kind of approach was clearly out the question.

However, when on Tobago there were a couple of places where it seemed worth giving hummingbird photography a try without any flash. I was determined to avoid feeder shots and quickly found that some birds would hover momentarily off the feeders, allowing "clean" flight shots to be at least attempted. These weren't easy though as they didn't hover in any one spot for very long. At Newton George's excellent Hummingbird Gallery there were birds galore coming to the feeders and by now I had probably benefitted from some earlier experience at Adventure Farm. Of the hundreds of attempts I took that afternoon this is probably the best, even though the shutter speed wasn't fast enough to freeze the wings. At least the rest of the bird is reasonably sharp and it is nicely sideways on to the camera. Due to the poor light I was using ISO 3200 @ f4, but one of the benefits of the 7D mk II is its relatively low level of noise, after processing with NeatImage.

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