Bufflehead

Winter Ducks

For those of us that live in Massachusetts or New England winter really started on January 27. That was the first real heavy snow and for all of February and even into the first week of March is has been COLD and more snow then we know what to do with. This has put a real damper on photographing in some areas that in past winters I would have visited. With that in mind I made it a point to try for some of the winter ducks at places we do have access to like Town Brook Park (Jenney Pond) in Plymouth, Green Harbor in Marshfield and finally Wells, Maine. All provided some very good photography for ducks and some for loons and grebes.

Bufflehead
Bufflehead (male) Canon 600mm f4.0 IS + 1.4x, Gitzo tripod 1/3200 @f8, ISO 3200

The key to photographing ducks is to get as low as possible to the water to get that birds-eye view. However with all the snow and ice that is easier said then done. So dress warm, get low, bring a seat cushion and make sure you have a spare battery. Then when you get yourself into place more often than not the ducks will swim away.  But don’t fear if you stay put and are patient it’s only a matter of time before many of the ducks will begin to move close enough to allow for some good photo ops. Here’s some photos I had from the end of January up to the first week of March or click on the photos in this blog post, enjoy.

Common Loon
Common Loon

Take care and remember to help protect wildlife and wild places.

Shawn P. Carey
Migration Productions

6 thoughts on “Winter Ducks

  1. Excellent images as always.
    How much lens did you use on these? All 600mm plus 1.4x tele-extender? Or did some come in close enough to get good images with less glass?

    1. Hi Mile, yes I was using my 600mm plus 1.4x mounted on Gitzo tripod and my new Sachtler Fluid Video Head.

  2. Shawn,

    What is the thinking (ethics) regarding feeding the ducks to get them closer?

    Larry Richardson
    South Shore Camera Club

    1. Hi Larry, personally I do not have a problem with feeding ducks. In fact the federal government does just this at Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge in New Mexico. They grow corn and the fields are cut in the late fall and winter to feed thousands of Snow Geese and Sandhill Cranes.

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