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Archive 2015 · Great Horned Owl under Northern Lights
  
 
Hardcore
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Great Horned Owl under Northern Lights


Congratulations to Hardcore for winning Feature Thread of the Week with 12 votes - View Previous Winners


I was out shooting northern lights the other night. Someone wasn't happy I was sharing his hunting territory. I have heard him screaming for the past 2 weeks at night. Thought it was a screech owl until I saw him I abandoned my landscape setup and ran back to the house to grab my 300mm F.8 in hope I could somehow photograph this owl under the northern lights. When I returned he was still on his same perch about 40 yards away. I snapped a photo but there were no lights in the background. At that moment he flew. I thought he'd fly away but no, he flew and landed right next to me about 20 feet away. I was shocked. So I continued to photograph him for about an hour. At times we both just sat and watched the lights. Maybe he was just lonely and actually didn't want to chase me away.

At any rate, this was a very difficult bird to photograph. Viewfinder was completely black. Autofocus was hopeless for obvious reasons. I could see some slight contrast through the viewfinder though and was able to get close with manual focusing. I would then take a shot, chimp, take another shot, chimp until it was in focus. The problem was even at ISO 6400 & F2.8 the exposure was about 2 seconds. Lucky he held still long enough to get quite a few "sharp enough" shots considering the circumstances. I chose this route over a flash as I just don't like flashing owls and the results it gives. All natural lighting from the moon & northern lights.

I have also included a photo video of the photos I took along with an audio clip.

Thanks for looking,
Corey




Sharpest image of the night - less lights

  NIKON D800    300.0 mm f/2.8 lens    300mm    f/2.8    2s    6400 ISO    0.0 EV  






Another perch

  NIKON D800    300.0 mm f/2.8 lens    300mm    f/4.0    3s    6400 ISO    0.0 EV  






Slightly softer image but more northern lights

  NIKON D800    300.0 mm f/2.8 lens    300mm    f/2.8    2s    6400 ISO    0.0 EV  






First Perch

  NIKON D800    300.0 mm f/2.8 lens    300mm    f/2.8    6s    1600 ISO    0.0 EV  



Edited on Oct 03, 2015 at 10:11 PM · View previous versions



Oct 03, 2015 at 02:42 PM
Hardcore
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Great Horned Owl under Northern Lights


Here is a photo video with audio if anyone is interested.




Oct 03, 2015 at 02:43 PM
hnilsson
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Great Horned Owl under Northern Lights


Incredible images, Corey. And kudos to you for refraining from the use of flash.

Henrik



Oct 03, 2015 at 02:46 PM
morris
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Great Horned Owl under Northern Lights


It's amazing that you could get photos like this in such low light. Fabulous Corey

Morris



Oct 03, 2015 at 03:46 PM
Bmetcan
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Great Horned Owl under Northern Lights


Very cool. One of the good things about photographing these guys is that they'll stay still and just stare allowing for long shutter speeds without using flash (I feel the same about flash on owls.) Glad you two got to enjoy the light show together.


Oct 03, 2015 at 04:20 PM
Larry Williams
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Great Horned Owl under Northern Lights


You done did gooooood.

Lovin' it.

Larry



Oct 03, 2015 at 05:16 PM
surfnron
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Great Horned Owl under Northern Lights


Awesome shots under extreme conditions Corey ~ Ron


Oct 03, 2015 at 09:34 PM
Michael Rucci
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Great Horned Owl under Northern Lights


Awesome set Corey you really get a for these


Oct 03, 2015 at 10:00 PM
kmunroe
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Great Horned Owl under Northern Lights


great stuff Corey


Oct 03, 2015 at 10:39 PM
Hardcore
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · Great Horned Owl under Northern Lights


Thanks everyone for the comments!


Oct 04, 2015 at 01:12 PM
 

Search in Used Dept. 



Herb Houghton
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · Great Horned Owl under Northern Lights


excellent series, #1 is my pick


Oct 04, 2015 at 01:16 PM
Hardcore
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · Great Horned Owl under Northern Lights


Herb Houghton wrote:
excellent series, #1 is my pick


Thanks Herb!



Oct 06, 2015 at 08:21 PM
mabidally
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · Great Horned Owl under Northern Lights


Oh wow that is amazing!



Oct 06, 2015 at 08:47 PM
onegreatcity
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · Great Horned Owl under Northern Lights


Loved the story and you two sharing the night. Lovely shots too with #3 as my pick for eye contact and more intense NL.
Cam



Oct 06, 2015 at 09:23 PM
birdied
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · Great Horned Owl under Northern Lights


Absolutely amazing !!! So nicely done and good for you not using flash. Enjoyed the video too.

Birdie



Oct 07, 2015 at 02:07 AM
louie champan
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · Great Horned Owl under Northern Lights


Beautiful, amazing work.


Oct 07, 2015 at 02:19 AM
Hardcore
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · Great Horned Owl under Northern Lights


Thanks again for the great comments! Appreciate everyone taking the time to view and post their thoughts!



Oct 07, 2015 at 09:36 PM
RikWriter
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · Great Horned Owl under Northern Lights


Just incredible! Sounds like a once in a lifetime opportunity!


Oct 09, 2015 at 01:06 PM
Karl Witt
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · Great Horned Owl under Northern Lights


Quite a marvelous exercise in photography that had all your experience going to work for you!
Neat story and really some great results. This memory will certainly last a lifetime

Very special, great job!

Karl



Oct 09, 2015 at 02:02 PM
Rohanban
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · Great Horned Owl under Northern Lights


Oh snap!


Oct 09, 2015 at 03:47 PM
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