We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Sometimes squirrels eat bird food & sometimes birds eat squirrel food!
This guy (gal?) Red Tail spent from 10:30 am to about 3:30 pm on our lawn yesterday, with only occasional departures from munching on its kill. I was about 15 ft away with an 800mm lens and really didn't bother the hawk at all.
Ah yes, nature, red in tooth and claw...
Had a Marlin Perkins moment many years back.
Participants: My young boys, M-I-L, myself, at her kitchen window.
Tableau: Two squirrels at the bird feeder, who were know as "Peanut Butter and Jelly"
Action: A Red Tail comes in from out of nowhere and - BAM, Jelly is toast. The hawk ripped the squirrel to shreds. The boys thought it was "so cool" and my M-I-L was taken with the vapors. To this day she will cry if the event is mentioned.
Me I had to clean up the remains...
Ah - macro zoom - makes sense now. I should have thought of that though - Olympus has a 28-840 macro zoom. 800 mm fixed is a HUGE lens and all you would see is bird at 15 feet. :>)
You can tell it was uncropped just by the way the hawk is framed in the picture.
I just looked up the specs on that camera - damn that is a really nice compact. $350 at Amazon. I think I'm gonna get me one of those. I hate to do it - I'm an Olympus guy, but Oly ain't got nuttin' like it. :>)
I once got a close-up photo of a Red-tailed Hawk that was sitting on the sign of the Orvis clothing store on Commercial Street in Boston, just down the street from the Union Oyster House. I looked up and there it was, scanning the crowd of humans for a lunch snack I suppose. Surprised the heck out of me.
I also own a copy of the SX30. I bought it as a replacement for my Panasonic FZ28, which can zoom out to a 35mm equivalent focal length of 480mm. For birding, a longer focal length is often essential. Unfortunately, my SX30 is not very sharp, which is quite disappointing. I've thought about sending it in to Canon for service and recalibration, but I keep putting it off. I really need to do something about it before I go on safari next year.
Tom, I'm with you. That's so amazing I had to look it up. From some review site:
"Canon really managed to surprise us by implementing a 24-840mm (35mm equiv.) 35x zoom lens on the SX30 IS. This is the longest zoom ever achieved on consumer compact digital camera (together with Olympus SP-800UZ, 840mm)."
And Gwyn, you made a good point by noting it was uncropped. To get an object that size to fill the screen from 15' away would take a monster lens. Congrats on what looks like an exceptional purchase.
Oh I wish there were more of those beautiful birds in my neighborhood...the squirrels here are out of control. My poor little bully-dog can only do so much to keep them at bay, so I might have to get out the pellet gun (a 60's Crossman 140, .22 caliber) and start laying waste. Maybe give the carcasses to the OWS crowd here in Denver? I'll say that they were local and sustainable and organic n' stuff....
One of the coolest things I ever saw was a Red Tail sail across a small field and then flare up at the edge and stick it's feet out and pluck a squirrel off the side of a hickory tree. I wish I had been filming. Another time I witnessed a youngish one chase down a bird in the air and catch it. Sort of like a dogfight.
I've heard that the traditional Italian luncheon is an hours long affair that includes servings of wine. Perhaps this hawk was flying off to his vino stash between courses; which raises a question: Red or white with squirrel?