Second March visit to Hartsholme

As stated in my previous Hartsholme blog entry I am the proud owner of the 70-200mm f2.8 VR II Nikon AF-S lens and that I had ordered the TC 17E II (1.7x) teleconverter but it hadn’t arrived. The following Wednesday after the visit I got a call from London Camera Exchange in Lincoln that the teleconverter had arrived.

So the following Saturday (last weekend) I went to try out the 70-200 +1.7x which gave me an effective aperture of 4.76 with an actual aperture of around f4 (from a depth of field point of view).

So what shots did I get?

I started at the usual place and got the obligatory Canada Goose:

I like this shot due to the way the Goose is craning its neck.

As I stated in my last post, this is a great time of year for bird photography as there is a lot of action as the various species mark territory and select mates. Here me have a male Mallard duck chasing off another male Mallard:

And here are two Coots in a similar manner:

There were also a pair of Tufted ducks swimming around and diving for food, I saw some tufted ducks the weekend prior but couldn’t get close enough, the extra reach of the 1.7 TC allowed me to capture them:

Here is one close up:

and then diving for food:

There were also a pair of Cormorants, one was there at the start of my visit and second one arrived:

The one at the back of the picture (with the browner plumage) is younger than the foreground Cormorant.

After sitting on the branch together for some time they decide to go into the water. I didn’t see them enter and from a distance I though that they were Crested Grebes until I took the picture that is:

As you can see the one of the left is about to take off.

Here is the Cormorant as he takes off:

The Cormorant on the right took off to the right a few seconds after this – I couldn’t get pictures of both unfortunately.

The Herons were also present, I didn’t see any young but they were flying around and occasionally bringing back twigs to maintain their nests:

As usual, the Geese were flying in from time to time. Sometimes in singles or pairs:

Technically this is a “butt” shot but the eye is in focus and I like the motion blur in the wings.

Sometimes wholw flocks of them cam into land:

Finally, there were a number of black-headed gulls around although less than before which means it’s getting warmer and Spring is finally upon us:

I like this picture as there are two birds in focus while the other birds all at various points of focus.

All in all it was a very rewarding trip with lots to see and the extra reach of the TC17-E II made all the difference.