Back Up Slope They Come
We know spring has sprung at our home when the Steller’s Jays are back in mass. In the winter, the majority of them do a down slope migration to warmer haunts. But once the spring equinox occurs, back up they come. As the time gets closer to start a nest, the males are quite spectacular like this one individual. We had a snow today and that big, soft, overcast light was perfect to give them a little attention, especially with their lookin so good. Shooting from my desk, I just watch until a gorgeous individual appears and then simply go click.
Their blue stripes in the crown are simply a blazed right now! With their crown erect, their stare down their bill penetrates the lens. This male was so close, I had to go vertical. Shooting with the D4s / 800f5.6AFS, horizontal cropped the tail so I had to go vertical. I was being, well, lazy and didn’t want to take the time to set up the softbox so I simply raised the ISO to ISO 800. With the D4s, no big deal but I won’t make a habit of it. Because of where the Jay was perched, I went to handholding (this body/lens combo is incredibly balanced) to make the shot and even shooting at ISO800 I was at 1/40. These guys are such characters though. The Pine Siskins, Evening Grosbeaks, Cassin’s Finchs all scatter when the Jays come in and I think the Jays do it on purpose.