Fun With Raptors at the Hawk Conservancy

January 11, 2013  •  1 Comment

I had a very enjoyable session photographing various raptors in flight at the Hawk Conservancy in Hampshire this afternoon.  A beautiful blue sky, well behaved birds (and humans) and an opportunity to enjoy using my lighter lens handheld - the Sigma 120-300mm combined with the Canon 1.4x III.  See what you think of the results. 

White-headed vulture

White-headed Vulture 1White-headed vulture - Trigonoceps occipitalis (Captive) White-headed Vulture 2White-headed vulture - Trigonoceps occipitalis (Captive) White-headed Vulture 3White-headed vulture - Trigonoceps occipitalis (Captive) Black Kite

Black Kite 1Black Kite - Milvus migrans (Captive) Black Kite 2Black Kite - Milvus migrans (Captive) Snowy Owl

Snowy Owl 1Snowy Owl - Bubo scandiacus (Captive) Snowy Owl 2Snowy Owl - Bubo scandiacus (Captive) Peregrine Falcon

Peregrine FalconPeregrine falcon - Falco peregrinus (Captive) African Fish Eagle

African Fish Eagle 1African Fish Eagle - Haliaeetus vocifer (Captive) African Fish Eagle 2African Fish Eagle - Haliaeetus vocifer (Captive)


Comments

WildImaging
Just had a question about the Sigma 120-300mm and whether I'd recommend it. Here's my answer:

There's absolutely loads on the web about this lens and most of it is good. It's sharp, AF speed is reasonable and colour rendition/contrast is fine. It's great to have a range of focal lengths available with the one lens. It works well with teleconverters both 1.4 and 2x and supposedly works best with Sigma TCs. I've used both Canon and Sigma TCs.

I'm not entirely happy with mine although I've hardly used it. I'm not entirely sure the 4 stop IS is working consistently and yesterday the AF didn't work at all until I focused manually a couple of times and then it behaved itself. This ties in with the negative comments about the lens - ie reliability issues. This is countered to a certain extent by a 3 yr warranty from Sigma.

If money was no object I'd have the Canon 300mm f.28 or even better the 200-400mm when it comes out. If time had been no object, I'd have waited for the new Sigma 120-300 with a focus limiter switch and improved production methods so hopefully better reliability.
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