Wildlife in our back yard

Railphotog

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I've been attracting several gray squirrels with peanuts, and have lots of fun trying to capture them with my camera:

Squirrel17Aug2011-1.jpg


This is the boldest squirrel this year, will come right onto the table beside me, here he seems to be asking "Where's my peanut anyway?":

Squirrel17Aug2011-2.jpg


A downey woodpecker dipping its "toes" in the birdbath:

Woodpecker17Aug2011.jpg
 

edddial

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Nice shoot! How close are you with the squirrel? Or you're using zoom lens?
 
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Railphotog

Railphotog

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Nice shoot! How close are you with the squirrel? Or you're using zoom lens?

See here:

Shootingsquirrels14Aug2011.jpg


I'm almost on top of the squirrel, as you can see by the photo. My Canon SX30 has an equivalent of 24mm at its widest, which is where I shoot most of the time. Along with its maximum aperture of f/8 and the diffused flash I use at times, I can get fairly close shots of the critters. I tried using my DSLR a year or so ago, but the mechanical shutter noise would startle the squirrel, and I'd get its reaction to the noise rather than it picking up the peanut. The SX30 has of course a silent electronic shutter. And with its swivel LCD rear viewfinder, I can shoot while sitting back, with just my hand on the shutter button. I'm careful not to move at all.

To answer the other question, no I don't sit waiting for hours, usually quite a bit shorter. And in any case, it's so nice there that I don't mind. I put peanuts out on a feeder in a nearby tree, so the squirrels come pretty regularly. And I often leave peanuts on the tables and chairs when I'm not there to get them accustomed to being around. I also dip the peanuts in peanut butter, which they really like and can smell from quite far away. We have three of the critters visiting regularly, but this one with the notched ear is the boldest, and the only one that will come up on the table.

Fun summer days! Thanks for the comments!
 
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SpaceNut

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Shooting nature and wildlife is fun isn't it. Nice job with these photos. Too bad the ear is cut off of the squirrel in the 2nd photo, but still nice shot. Thanks for sharing.
 

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