Sunset with Sanderlings

After my disappointment in finding my favorite Osprey nest was destroyed by Hurricane Irene, I decided I just needed to grab my camera and go shoot.

Sanderling with a Clam

A closeup shows just how much this bird had to eat. It took him about 5 minutes of flipping and dropping the clam to figure out how to get it in his bill in order to swallow it!

Sanderling with a Clam, Closeup

Given how far I had to walk to find these 3 birds, I decided not to bring my big glass with me. The gear I used here was a 70-200 VR II and Tce 2 III, a new birding rig for me. It gave me a zoom range of 140-400. Normally I would select my 200-400 for that focal range in order to have one extra stop of light. But that lens was not with me. The results are not half bad.

Sanderling Shiver
Sanderling Digging Deep

If you are wondering how I was able to get this close to a usually very skittish bird, here is the trick. I sat myself down on the beach with my back to the sun (over my right shoulder) and people swimming to my left. The birds, after a short time, didn’t even know I was there. I knew that if I stayed still, they would gradually make their way away from the noisy swimmers and right towards me…..and the beautiful sunset light :-).

Images captured on Nikon D3x w/70-200 2.8 VR II and Tce 2 III on Lexar Digital film.