…morning light is magic…

Trip to South Texas Ranch – Green Jay

Made my first trip to South Texas a couple of weeks ago for some very cool bird photography at Laguna Seca ranch, near Edinburg TX, about 40 miles from Mexico.  Thanks again Beth for the invitation.  Laguna Seca is set up with several blinds for morning and afternoon photography.  My first experience at shooting from a blind, but it won’t be my last as I’ll be heading back there again next year.  Our guide, Ruth Hoyt, did an excellent job and I would highly recommend her.  It was a slow time of year for Raptors but we did get did get to see several species of birds along with a few ground squirrels that put on quite a show.

We got lucky that the rain held off for the most part but it was cloudy both mornings, which made for some low light conditions.  Had to break out the flash/better beamer, which I haven’t used for over a year.

When I told Ruth that my goal was to get some Green Jay photos, she said that wouldn’t be a problem as they were abundant.  They showed up at each of the blinds so I was a happy camper.


Taken with Canon 1DX and Canon 500mm F4 IS II mounted on tripod with Wimberley II gimbal head

1/800 sec @ F10, ISO 1600, evaluative metering, +1/3 exposure compensation

321_Laguna Seca_04182015-2

1/250 sec @ F7.1, ISO 1600, evaluative metering, +1/3 exposure compensation, fill flash with Better Beamer (-3 stops)

050_Laguna Seca_04182015-3

1/1000 sec @ F10, ISO 3200, evaluative metering, +1 exposure compensation

645_Laguna Seca_04172015-2


6 responses

  1. Beautiful background, composition, and bird.

    May 4, 2015 at 10:14 am

  2. Ward Roberson

    Assuming you were invited as a guest, not a paying customer, would you be satisfied had you been paying? I’m looking for painted buntings and cara cara next spring. Love your Boliver photos.

    Ward Roberson

    Sent from my iPhone


    May 4, 2015 at 12:34 pm

  3. Thanks Stephen. They have their blinds set up with great backgrounds. It was lots of fun.

    May 4, 2015 at 4:59 pm

  4. Thanks Ward. I was a paying customer and was very satisfied. An extra day would have been nice but our schedule was limited to two days of photography and two days of travel. Recommend contacting Ruth to confirm the best timing. She mentioned that the painted buntings show up in April and we saw some. I’ll post some of those shots later. The raptors are slow in April as they were nesting. It gets a little toasty sitting in blinds in south Texas so keep that in mind. It wore us out.

    May 4, 2015 at 5:06 pm

  5. Good looking Green Jays Tim. Looks like I need to add this to my bucket list.

    May 8, 2015 at 7:52 pm

  6. Thanks David. It’s worth the 7 hr drive.

    May 10, 2015 at 8:34 am

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