Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge – Part Two

While in Maryland presenting some photography programs to MDPPA I found some extra time to go in search of wildlife. I had the pleasure of spending a couple of days with Chris Paulis as he took us to the wildlife refuge from Columbia a couple of hours away in Cambridge, Maryland.

You can check the first post where I shared some large avian creatures AKA the Great Blue Herons. Today I am going to show the world of ducks that we were able to find. There were lots of Northern Shovelers which show quite beautiful plumage. If you don’t know better, it’s relatively easy to mistake their feather patterns for Mallards. Since both were hanging around you can check out the similarities and the differences.

Onward to the duck photos!

male northern shoveler duckThese guys tended to stay right on the edge of being able to get beautiful photos. Male Northern Shoveler.

Both Chris and I were using Panasonic Lumix cameras, He had the Lumix G9, and I had the Lumix GH5. We both used the Lumix G Leica 100-400mm f4.5-6.3 lens. Having that reach at full extension (800mm 35mm FF equivalent) made it possible for us to capture many of the shots that would otherwise have been more humdrum. The five-axis image stabilization enabled hand holding even fully extended. It makes a huge difference in the tracking the ever-changing movement of our subjects.

male mallard duckThe reflection of the sunset light on the water warms this photo of a male Mallard.

male mallard duck photoMale Mallard duck in flight.

If at all possible I try to capture images that include behavior. Taken just after leaving the water droplets fall helping to add more detail to the story.

northern shoveler ducks in flight imageThis photo is one of my favorite images from the day. A couple of Northern Shoveler ducks take to the air.

It was a great day, so I probably have one or two more posts to share from our refuge adventure.

Yours in Creative Photography,        Bob