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Quetzal with Berry

Image # 1D2_03932

Cerro de la Muerte


Canon 100-400L/f4.5-5.6 IS at 400 mm

ISO 400, f/8, 1/250 second

Manual Metering, 550EX/BB at 0 EV



We first shot the Quetzal shortly after dawn our first morning at Cerro de la Muerte, and I was using the Canon 600L. Because we were unexpectedly close to the birds, and especially because of the extremely long tail-feathers of the male, I found I was unable to get a shot with the entire male's body in the frame. After breakfast, a few of us returned to shoot some more, and this time I set up with the 100-400, with the goal of getting a shot of the entire body of the male, head to tip of tail. While waiting for this opportunity, the female once again appeared, this time with a berry of some type in its beak.

Also, I abandoned using the tripod when shooting with the 100-400, as I needed to be much more maneuverable, since the Quetzal could appear and perch anywhere, and there were often very narrow 'windows' where they could be photographed relatively in the clear.