Sunday, November 11, 2007

Red-wattled Lapwing

Next time, if you land up in a wetland, and hear the sound 'did-ye-do-it' , then probably this Red-wattled Lapwing is around. This bird can be called the sentry of a forest; since it is uncannily and ceaselessly vigilant, day or night, and is the first to detect intrusions and raise an alarm, and therefore a nuisance to hunters.
Now while photographing birds, one has to approach the bird as close as possible, to get a good shot. Even with a good tele-lens, a close up of the bird is always give a sharp photograph. The following tips may help you in this endeavor.
1. Avoid Black, white or bright coloured clothes, instead wear a dull green colour or a dead leaf coloured dress. Even a violet coloured dress should be fine, since birds are incapable of seeing this colour.
2. Put rubber soled shoes to avoid noise and avoid dead leaves and twigs.
3. Do not make sudden movements, including turning you head suddenly or moving your arms. I keep my one eye glued on to the viewfinder, even if i have put off the camera and look around with the other eye.
4. Keep as small a profile as possible, even going down on knees or hiding partly behind bushes and rocks.
5. Learn from a fox- he hunts alone, so prefer being alone, or if you have company, keep distance from each other.
6. When approaching the bird in open, approach it in zigzag or circular movement, avoid direct forward movement.
7. Early mornings and late afternoons are the best time and windy days are unfavorable for bird photography, since birds are shy and retiring during windy days.
8. I usually photograph on aperture priority, using maximum aperture.

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