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Digiscoping a Grebe (1 Viewer)

Well today a goal was to digiscope a Western Grebe and to do so in the right sunlight...

I feel I was successful..see image...

One thing I learned was how to get a fairly clear shot of a Grebe. We all know that the angle of sunlight hitting upon the Grebe is important and especially so with this bird since it has that 'red eye''...I wanted that to show and show clear.

So the first thing I figured out was that the Grebe had to be swimming in one direction...okay, fair enough.

Now...I go back to my 'current' problem as I found on the Oregon Coast...how to digiscope with the bird moving, either by the current or by swimming as was this case. I took my shots of a bird in a man-made lake..as it swam past me. I probably waited in the bushes for an hour before the grebes made there way close to my end of the lake as I waited in anticipation.

I tried several methods...including that of having my left hand on the helical focus of my Swarovski scope while my right hand remained glued to the camera trigger.. the left hand also moved the scope to keep in line with the bird swimming,. This worked well.

While the bird swam and I kept pace with it on the scope...I had my camera swung down all ready to take a shot and my left hand continually focusing the bird on the LCD.... It seemed like a good plan as my camera was on manual mode and I had it magnified in the LCD. I took lots of shots with this method.... no avail..the bird continually was out of focus enough to make the images useless in my opinion...perhaps not to my level of skill and technology of 1995, but surely not digiscoping in 2012.

I reverted back to my old method...a time delay of one second and four continuous shots. this produced the most in focus hits upon the grebe. Although remember, the grebe is moving and I have my hands free of the scope and helical focus..the grebe is swimming. And away it swims,...away and out of view of the camera too!!!..So out of every 4 picture sequence...two were always blank as the grebe swam out of view. Of the other two...I managed to take some some shots of grebes in focus....see my images ...

So...what did I learn?....I can take 'current or swimming shots' but it is difficult. I still need to use the time delay and not the single shot...that proved to again be the trick. At same time...realize there will be lots of useless shots as the bird simply swam out of the camera ....but of the few that remained, I could get some really good shots.

I love the color involved in digiscoping...rich, vivid...and the closeness...I cannot do this with my Canon 7D and 400 L lens....


  • Western Grebe 2 Bennington Digiscoped Nov 11.jpg
    Western Grebe 2 Bennington Digiscoped Nov 11.jpg
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  • Western Grebe pair Bennington Digiscoped Nov 11.jpg
    Western Grebe pair Bennington Digiscoped Nov 11.jpg
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