… I’ve Hit 200 Species!!!
Today at Vassar Farm, mother nature put on one hell of a show. It will be one to remember, not only for the new addition to my life list, but for the 86 total species seen for the day. My 200th species is a Canada Warbler, and they certainly made me work for the shots.
I actually ran into a female canada warbler first, but harsh light and branches in the foreground made it difficult to lock on to my subject automatically. I had to switch to manual focus, and after many failed attempts, I got a somewhat successful result:
I would have been completely content with that too, but I got two more run-ins with this new species throughout the day…
The second attempt was a complete bust. I couldn’t keep up with it and it got away before I could snap a shot. I wasn’t really bummed out considering that the species will forever be a symbol of my 200th bird on my life list.
The final meeting with the Canada Warbler was after being in the field for over five hours. I was sweaty, tired and running out of strength, plus this was my fifth day in a row hiking and photographing wildlife too. The odds were against me, so I took a deep breath and went to work.
This time, I had the more colorful male hoping through the thick vegetation. The first few shots were either mostly obscured or out of focus. I didn’t let it phase me and continued to wait for my opportunity. Then, it jumped out in to clear view! I took a few shots, and this was the best of the first exchange.
The shot was a little shaky, but it was still the best shot up to that point. I continued to wait some more and another opportunity arose.
A little sharper and mostly unobstructed with the exception of his perch. At this point, he began to ascend higher up into the trees. I managed one more decent shot, which to me, really sums up the day and experience nicely.