Animals in Their Natural Setting

I learned that the community prefers photos of animals and in particular of birds, where the subject is free of distracting other elements. Most of the time, such a shot is not easy to be achieved. You have to look carefully how you position yourself towards the subject and in some cases feeders or dropping food increases the chances for a good position. Nevertheless, with all the tricks and experience, having the subject free of nearby vegetation in focus is largely a question of luck.

Common Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs) [de: Buchfink]

I realized though, that when looking through the photos of my sessions that I actually prefer shots where the subject is embedded within the its natural setting. It may not always the most artful presentation but these shots not only show the animal itself but also tell stories about where the animals lives.

The photo of this Common Chaffink [Fringilla coelebs] (Buchfink in German) is a typical case. I have other shots where this bird is more isolated but I prefer this one because it also shows you how good this bird is hidden within the leaves of the tree.

Flowers of the Swiss Alps

Being aware of my difficulties to identify flowers in parks around Montreal, I don’t even start to id the flowers I encounter during my hikes in the Swiss Alps. I just enjoy the colourfulness of the different flowers and their occasional cohabitants and visitors.

Nevertheless, having seen so many different colours and shapes, I am motivated, once back in Montreal, to continue documenting wild flowers in the parks of Quebec, a project I have neglected over past months.

Getting Better in Bird Watching

I remember previous visits of my home country Switzerland when I was wondering where all the birds have gone. In particular, I remember a walk along a river near my brother’s home where I haven’t seen birds except two crows or ravens far away.

Different this time. During a walk along the same river, I spotted four different species:

Not enough. During my hikes up in the mounts of Canton of Glarus, I also spotted four different species of birds of prey. The quality of these shots are not the best, nevertheless, clear enough to get an ID:

I don’t blame a temporal lack of birds in Switzerland during my previous visit for me not spotting birds before but rather that my continuous training in spotting birds over the last years improved my skills now.

Except the Common Blackbird and the Peregrine Flacon, all birds shown here are live birds. I may have seen them before but I don’t recall having them spotted and identified before.

Macro-Season About to Start

I am looking forward to my official start of macro season. Looking around in nature for beautiful patterns and colour combinations is rewarding. Here a few sample shots taken on my trip to Tadoussac.

I use my Nikon D500 mounted with the TAMRON SP 90mm F2.8 Di Macro VC USD F017N Macro lens.

Featured Image:

Exploring Tadoussac

Pinecone Captured at Pointe de l’Islet Tadoussac on 25 May 2018 by Karl-Heinz Müller

Disclaimer: Products and services of all brands mentioned in this post have been purchased by myself and they are not mentioned here because I recommend them but solely because at the moment when I acquired them they looked to me as the best option for the available budget.

New Words: Pinecone – Tannzapfen, Lichen – Flechte

I Did It – New Workflow

I did it. I cancelled my Adobe Subscription. As nature photographer, why would I do such a thing and cancel my Adobe Subscription? It is not because I have any issues in using their products and my workflow using Adobe Lightroom and Adobe Photoshop has been quite efficient. Providing monthly subscription fee with a yearly contract and a penalty when cancelling before makes no sense to me as customer and I consider it as bad business practice and my only power against companies with bad business practices is not paying for their products.

Photo Shooting

Geo tagging of my photos is very important. For that I usually run SnapBridge [I have a Nikon camera] while taking photos to make sure that the photos are geo tagged in spite of draining my iPhone battery which I cannot replace in the field.

Import and Selection

Done with Photo Mechanic [thank you Conradin]. The 150 USD have hurt me but it not only allows me to rename the files and store them in a logically way on import, I also can efficiently remove trash shots. I import into an external drive as my laptop has limited hard drive capacity [backed up].

Editing

From Photo Mechanic, I pull the photos which I want to edit and publish into Apple Photos App. For most of the shots, the Photo App editing features are enough. If needed, I always can edit a raw file in Affinity Photo.

Disclaimer: All equipment and software have been purchased. I don’t endorse any of the products used. I bought them because at the time when I needed them, they looked like the best options for my purpose and budget.

Featured Image: Common Eider (Somateria mollissima) taken in Tadoussac. Nikon D500, Nikkor 300mm f/4, TC 1.4, Photo Mechanic, Apple Photo Apps

Exploring Tadoussac

On Land & In Water – The Mammals – Tadoussac

It was no suprise to see squirrels, they are everywhere, and beluga whales, frequently to be seen from the coast at Tadoussac. Minke Whales and Grey Seals are already more rare. Minke whales can be seen from the beach though but because of their colour difficult to spot.

Finally, the Porcupine was a complete surprise. I saw it on a hike to the dunes about 5km from Tadoussac.

Featured Image: My favorite of these photos. Three Grey Seals relaxing a bit up the fjord of Saguenay

Grey Seal (Halichoerus grypus)

The Little Ones – Tadoussac

It was a joy to walk around in the woods and look out for all the busy small birds collecting food after their long migratory voyage. Some more colourful than others, some better hidden than others.

I saw these 7 within a few hours. Four of them, Yellow-rumped Warbler, Magnolia Warbler, Cape May Warbler and Palm Warbler are all birds of pages 208/209 of my indispensable guide “Le Guide des Oiseaux du Quebec et des Maritimes” which I use to id then back at the hotel.

Back to Tadoussac

I visited Tadoussac in 2013 with the main goal to see some whales. I returned this year in the hope to get more photos and not only of whales. It’s early into the season and there are still snow patches here and there. Temperatures are reasonable though and migratory birds have arrived.

Here the link to my previous post about Tadoussac

It was a very fortunate day today, with many birds species I see the first time. I also saw a few belugas and a porcupine.

Featured Photo: Ruby-crowned Kinglet, difficult to spot and even more difficult to photograph. It hides within the bushes most of the time and flies fast and erratically.

Ruby-crowned Kinglet (Regulus calendula)