Peregrine Falcon

Monday, April 15, 2013

For the birds

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to heaven, we were all going direct the other way - in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only.
Charles Dickens - A Tale of Two Cities
Neither a borrower nor a lender be;  For loan oft loses both itself and friend,      And borrowing dulls the edge of husbandry.  This above all: to thine own self be true,  And it must follow, as the night the day, Thou canst not then be false to any man.
William Shakespeare - Hamlet, Act I, Scene 3
It was a nice weekend. Sold a painting Saturday. Got taken to lunch by some nice ladies. I bought a painting or two. Yesterday morning Leslie made me coffee and her special pecan banana pancakes with flaxseed. I drove the van the two mile ride down the canyon to my mailbox in my bathrobe so that we could read the newspaper while we ate. On the way I caught this Osprey on a high bough with my 300mm.

I have been watching the hawk nest pretty closely. She had been exhibiting some strange behavior, a back and forth shuffling motion that I hadn't seen before, almost like she was laying an egg.

I needed a new pair of tennis shoes, I go through New Balance about a pair every three months, not having a lifestyle that really lends itself to clean shoes. We decided to drive to Temecula and see what they had at the Nordstrom Rack if not Big 5. We found a pair at the latter and decided to catch a movie, settling on Life of π in 3d. With my advance into senior citizenship, it cost $11.50 for the both of us. We enjoyed the movie, I would like to think that he made the trip with the tiger, thank you. You can believe what you want to. Loved the effect of the fish creating his mother's face, although there was almost too much cinematic trickery and it tends to get fatiguing. New digital toys, everybody's fighting it. Just because you can doesn't mean you necessarily should...

I drove out to work a little before seven this morning and saw the little hawk head popping out of the nest. I pulled the tripod and Doug's 400mm out of the trunk and snapped away for a half hour, hundreds of sharp shots of feeding. One chick this time, a first, unless there is one hiding somewhere.

I reluctantly drove off and drove to coffee. I pulled the rig out and decided to inspect my visual swag. To my horror, every shot was blurry. I had shot both automatic and manual focus, wide open and bracketed, this couldn't be. Ken was the one that broke the news, the fall off the tripod had obviously screwed the lens up, although there was no visible sign of damage. I had assumed everything was okay. Wrong. Here's what the pictures looked like.

A little bit dizzy, huh? A disaster. I am totally disconsolate. I had borrowed the lens from a dear friend. I called Nikon and they estimate that it will cost at least $600.00 to fix, if it can be fixed. It sold for a couple grand new and this is not the best possible timing. If not I get to buy my buddy a new lens. What did Vladimir Ilyich say, or was it John, Life is what happens to you while you are busy making other plans?

I had wanted to get pictures of the first day and drove back and swapped my undersized 70 to 300mm. I waited for an hour. The baby never appeared and it finally started to rain. Perhaps I will have better luck this afternoon. Looks like I am in for one of those days. Beats getting hit by a bus.


Sanoguy said...

So sorry, Blue Heron I know of a repair place in San Diego. Let me know if you want info on them.

Anonymous said...

I have a black armband on.

North County Film Club said...

So sorry about your lens.
The baby birds have hatched at my house, too. Not a hawk. Somebody told me it's a wren. Someone else said a sparrow. I, obviously don't know my birds. There are 5 of them and they all seem to be O.K. Now I'm going to worry until the all grow up and fly away.

Ken Seals said...

The biggest issue with the blurry photo is camera motion. That's not to say the lens doesn't have problems. I'll check it out for you.

Ken Seals said...

By the way, the sharp hawk images are really spectacular! Congratulations. These really show what one can do by working a situation over and over again.

Blue Heron said...

It's not camera motion. I have been using this lens for the past year. 300 is perfect. It was lens motion. The motion of it hitting the dirt.

grumpy said...
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