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Thank you very much John.
Actually these are with flash . My set up is nothing complicated. It is:
Nikon D 800
300 mm f/4 lens was used for the shots above with the Kenko 12mm extension tube.
(Also use the 105mm micro on occasion )
SB 900 speed light on camera . I used the plastic diffuser that comes with it plus I put the opteka small soft box diffuser over the plastic one. I am not very good at DIY projects! This is the combo I came up with and am pretty happy with it. I do want to get a flash bracket and try with that at some point.
I use the flash in fill flash for these as it was quite sunny. I usually will dial in a flash compensation as well.
I find I really try to expose to the right . I find this gives me more options in post.
I do handhold most of the time , but sometimes use a monopod. These were handheld. Find handholding makes it easier to chase after them . I am not coordinated enough to fumble with adjusting tripods that quickly. I do however sit , kneel or lay on the ground and use my elbows or knees for support.
I set the exposure manually , but do use auto ISO especially when the critters are going between sun and shade or clouds are moving in and out.
I don't use anything to try and pose or freeze the subject. Personal decision , I just follow them around and hope they land on a nice perch and that I am quick enough to get a shot before they move on
The rest is hoping, praying and just enjoying the moment.
Hope this helps. Just let me know if you need more information or if you have any suggestions for improvements.