Stripe-throated Hermit captured by Z 9 / Z600f4 TC @840mm handheld

Hummingbirds are simply, amazing! You might be wondering why the Stripe-throated Hermit looks like a hummingbird but it’s name is Hermit? That’s a long story the biologists need to answer, my challenge is to say in the photograph it’s special, and it’s small. Looking at them with the naked eye, in binoculars and especially in the viewfinder, they seem larger than life. It is actually a bizarre phenomenon how the mind “plays a trick” on our senses that fascinates me pushing my photography of these lightning bolts. The Stripe-throated is on the lower end of the hummingbird pecking order being push around by all the other species (nearly 20) in the area. It would appear in the shrubs like a ghost and disappear the same way. This bird, weighing the same as a penny, no bigger than a business card, how do you communicate that in a frame, the challenge I gave myself for the week. My first photos the Hermit was larger in the frame with more shrub surrounding it. I quickly realized that wasn’t going to work. It looked “big.” So I fell back on the basics, the eye first goes to light and bright in a frame, and then sharpness. Knowledge I’ve employed over the decades works so well in telling a visual story. In this case, I needed to find that one blossom by itself with the right light and catch the Stripe-throated feeding at it. You can’t tell in the photo, but the rain forest a mile off is the background. With the restriction of the shooting area where we were shooting, I waited with the Z 9 / Z600f4 TC @840mm handheld for it to appear. When it appeared the race began to acquire the feeding spec in the viewfinder, follow it as it fed and wait for it to go to the blossom I had in my mind for the story. In the lower light, I had to raise the ISO to 1600 and relied on Auto Area AF – Bird to lock on to the Hermit. On the 4th day, I found my shot. Later on I was out exploring and one came up to a blossom right next to me, just a foot or two away and I could see then, and only then, just how tiny this mighty power plant truly is. Still amazes me, it’s the weight of a penny!

error: Content is protected !!