Photographing Malachite Kingfishers
I spent the past few weekends photographing Malachite Kingfishers, their colours never cease to amaze me!
I am fortunate that a breeding pair and 3 juveniles (babies) have made my local wetland, Intaka Island, their home.
There are a few hides at Intaka but the “Malachite” hide is a morning light location. The hide is popular therefore it’s best to get an early start – members stake their claim (ie bench) from 6am onwards.
There are various perches close to the hide but as the Kingfishers are small (only 13cm long) I would recommend your longest lens.
My setup is as follows:
- Canon 7D mk2 and Canon 400DO IS II with 1.4x extender attached (effective reach is 896mm).
- I use the ledge of the hide to place my bean bag on for stability.
A few tips to help you capture the images you are after:
- Focus on the eye as you always want a sharp, clear eye preferably with catch light (light reflection)
- AI Servo AF (Canon) or Continuous-Servo AF (Nikon)
- Continuous Drive mode and not Single Shot
- Shutter Speed of 1/1100 and above
I managed to capture the following images – you can distinguish the juvenile from the adult by it’s dark bill.
Till next time …