Eastern Great Egret

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Dmenace
Dmenace's picture
Eastern Great Egret

Ardea modesta

I have the good fortune of living not five minutes walk from a small lake which is part of a linear reserve for high-tension powerlines that carve a swathe through Roxburgh Park on Melbourne's outer northern fringe.

The lake has a resident population of the usual suspects.  Coots, grebes, swamphens, the ubiquitous Pacific Black Duck among other species.  And an old man Settler Gander and his little posse to keep the peace and the foxes at bay.  I've never seen any sign of fox activity.

Last year there were a pair of Black Swans that produced a clutch of six early in spring.  They all survived but the family left as soon as the young ones were fully fledged.  The lake is regularly stocked with redfin, I believe, and despite all the hard rubbish from thoughtless residents it's a fairly healthy ecosystem.

Most of the smaller birds produced two clucthes over the past summer.  And the lake also arracts a wide variety of visting waders and fishers: cormorants of every kind, a regular gaggle of white ibis with the occassional straw-neck, the odd pelican, and I've seen white-face herons over the last two summers as well.

The most welcome sight recently has been two young Eastern Great Egrets making the most of the fishing.  They're endangered in Victoria so it's a pleasing sight to see two juveniles.  It shows that they're still breeding successfully in this area.

I found this guy fishing in the late afternoon sun at the western end of the lake.

My first shot clearly shows the three defining features: a neck longer than the body, a distinct kink 2/3s of the way up the neck, and the dark line extending from the base of the bill up below and beyond the eye.  The black tip on the bill shows it's a younger bird 

The rest show its wonderful fishing skills.

HelloBirdy
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Lovely, I've never seen a young Great Egret before

Ryu
Canberra
Aiming for DSLR-quality shots with a bridge camera

robwill
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Great shots demenace.. Good to see a reasonably healthy ecosystem despite some thoughtless individuals. 

Rob. 

Dmenace
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Thank you very much Ryu.

You made a comment about my very first post yesterday too.   Encouragement from like minded people really does mean a lot

Denis.

Dmenace
Dmenace's picture

Thank you indeed for your kind comments Rob.

I see a lot of locals fishing down at the lake and have a vague notion of getting them all together to clean up the lake, perhaps for 'Clean up Australia Day' or something like that.  But I've got no real idea of how to go about that.

I'd really appreciate any advice.

Cheers,
Denis.

rawshorty
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Nice shots, Denis. I too have a nice pond very close to me.

They would not be releasing Redfin though as that is illegal, might be Bass.

Shorty......Canon gear

Canberra

http://www.flickr.com/photos/rawshorty/ 

zosterops
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i hope they aren't, alas not legal and not occurring are two different things. 

note the 'they' isn't necessarily fisheries authorities 

Dmenace
Dmenace's picture

Hi RS.

Thank you for your kind remarks.

I've looked at you work - absolutely breathtaking.  You're one those that almost detered me from offerring my own shots.

You obviously know ya stuff, so I'm not at all surprised you were able to pick my kit.  I have a Canon 70D, but at the moment I'm limited to an EF 70-300 zoom.  I need more glass and have been thinking about a Tamron 150-600.  I'd certainly appreciate any advice of the suggestions.  I've been quoted $1200 for the Tamron by Michaels Camera in Melbourne.

I'm happy to stand corrected on the fish, I do birds.  I was just going by what the local fishermen have told me.

Cheers and thanks again,
Denis.

Rick N
Rick N's picture

Nice work Denis. Hope to see more of your images.

Dmenace
Dmenace's picture

Thank you for your kind comments Rick.

I had a fairly rare, for these parts, sighting of a Straw-necked Ibis on the weekend.  Just sorting out my shots so standby.

Cheers and thanks again,
Denis.

Woko
Woko's picture

Good work, Denis, & fine comments on several fronts.

I presume Clean up Australia operates in Victoria so you might try contacting them about getting together with locals to clean up the lake. Your presence with your camera at the lake has probably attracted some attention from fisher folk so you could use their fishing & your photography as a basis for developing relationships which could lead to group action on Clean Up Australia Day. Even better, it might lead to locals taking ownership of the lake & policing the polluters as well as educating them about the many values of the lake.

Local schools who use the lake for classes might also be interested in taking up the cause both for the benefit of the lake & also as a tool to teach students how to go about protecting their environment.

Araminta, who hasn't posted for some time, has done a similar thing at her local lake east of Melbourne. If I remember rightly she contacted the Melbourne Water Board/Authority & subsequent action has been taken to keep the lake in a much improved state.

timrp
timrp's picture

Nice shots, I really like the 6th photo!

Dmenace
Dmenace's picture

Thank you indeed, Woko.

Excellent advice.  I was pretty much thinking in that area but needed some guidance.  Schools are a great idea, there are several within walking distance and education is important.

The local newspaper, and the major retailers at the local shopping centre who own the bloody shopping trolleys.

Now you've kick started my brain.

Cheers Mate, thank you,
Denis.

Devster
Devster's picture

Dmenace wrote:

I have a Canon 70D, but at the moment I'm limited to an EF 70-300 zoom.  I need more glass and have been thinking about a Tamron 150-600.  I'd certainly appreciate any advice of the suggestions.  I've been quoted $1200 for the Tamron by Michaels Camera in Melbourne.

Cheers and thanks again,
Denis.

Hi Denis

The Canon 70D with the Tamron 150-600mm is the set up I'm currently running.

I have had the Tamron now for nearly 2 years and It's a good kit for the money.

As I am progressing in my photography am I at the stage where I want to upgrade. Just have to save up and convince the boss.

Some areas I find that the Tamron lacks is low light and Birds in Flight (although that could just be the operator).

I'm happy to show you some of the pics I have taken with this set up.

In fact I won 1st, 2nd and Reserve Champion at our local show for some of my photos with this gear.

PM me if you like.

Cheers 

Devster

rawshorty
rawshorty's picture

Dmenace wrote:

Hi RS.

Thank you for your kind remarks.

I've looked at you work - absolutely breathtaking.  You're one those that almost detered me from offerring my own shots.

You obviously know ya stuff, so I'm not at all surprised you were able to pick my kit.  I have a Canon 70D, but at the moment I'm limited to an EF 70-300 zoom.  I need more glass and have been thinking about a Tamron 150-600.  I'd certainly appreciate any advice of the suggestions.  I've been quoted $1200 for the Tamron by Michaels Camera in Melbourne.

I'm happy to stand corrected on the fish, I do birds.  I was just going by what the local fishermen have told me.

Cheers and thanks again,
Denis.

G'day Denis,

Thank you for the compliment.

Don't feel like you can't post pics, this is a bird forum not a photography forum. We all like to see what people are seeing and story's of what is going on where they are.

The lens you have is, to put it bluntly, one of the worst lens Canon has ever made.

I know a few people that have had the Tamron and ended up giving it back and picking up another lens, but in saying that i have a Sigma 150-500 that i was very happy with ( untill the OS motor died ) but most people don't like it. With a long lens it takes time to get used to it, they are a large heavy lens.

I did try the Sigma 150-600 sports and gave it a good work out but it was a very hit and miss lens and i swaped it over for the new Canon 100-400, a lens i can highly recommend. It is no sharper than my Sigma but a lot easier to hold all day and more versitile.

Shorty

Shorty......Canon gear

Canberra

http://www.flickr.com/photos/rawshorty/ 

Dmenace
Dmenace's picture

G'day Shorty,

Food for thought indeed, I need to do a lot more research.  And thank you very much for that encouragement.

You absolutely right about the Canon 70-300.  I began to realise that as soon as I started using it and wasn't getting the results I used to in the old film days.  I analysed everything I was doing and concluded that it must be the lens.

You've given me two excellent recommendations and a lot to consider, which I greatly appreciate.  It's the more experienced and dedicated guys like you that will help me from make another mistake like I did with my current lens.

BTW  Does the 'raw' in rawshorty mean you shoot in RAW?  I'm on the verge of going that way.

Cheers,
Denis.

rawshorty
rawshorty's picture

Denis, yes there are many options out there and research and money come into your decision.

I do shoot in RAW but they are my initials.

Shorty......Canon gear

Canberra

http://www.flickr.com/photos/rawshorty/ 

robwill
robwill's picture

Hi Denis... I hired the tamron 150-600 for 2 weeks and was very impressed with the sharpness of the lens, however it had a terrible habit of drawing in a lot of dust, even after 2 days of use. Took it back to the camera store and they said it was unusual. Tried again with another one but had the same problem. The hire company were very good and refunded my money. It's a shame because the lens  was vey good otherwise. The canon 400 f5.6 is another good lens but has no IS so a monopod or tripod is a must in spots where the light is not so good.

Rob. 

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