Muddy Feet

July 22, 2021  •  2 Comments

As I spent multiple days sitting near this pond that is drying out, I photographed many Great Blue Herons feasting on the trapped fish. 

One very late afternoon, just as I was about to pack up for the day, a coyote ventured over to the pond, no doubt attracted by the splashing fish. 

The muddy ground proved too much for the coyote to handle as he quickly gave up his pursuit of fish.

However, a second coyote followed a minute later and was more decisive: he didn't mind getting his feet dirty for an easy meal.

As the sun had long set by the time the coyote showed up, I had to choose my camera settings carefully.  

Even using the light sensitive Nikon 600mm f/4 lens wide open at f/4, the camera suggested an ISO of well over 10,000 to get the required shutter speed and capture the movement.  However, with the camera body I was using (Nikon D500), I avoid going over ISO 6,400 in order to get a useable image.

I tried panning the camera by using a slower shutter speed (which kept the need for higher ISOs low).

Using a tripod with a gimball head (click here for details), I slowed the shutter speed and panned by following the coyote from right to left. 

This image is my favorite, made with a shutter speed of 1/250s.  The coyote's face is sharp but the slower shutter speed and panning action blurred the feet and environment.

The other coyote could only watch and drool ...


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Jorn Vangoidtsenhoven Wildlife and Landscape Photography
Thank you Roberta!
- Jorn
Roberta Kravette(non-registered)
A powerful story. The dying pond giving temporary life. And then what? Thank you Jorn.
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