This spring and summer I have photographed Yellow Warblers primarily in mountainous riparian habitat so when I spotted one foraging in a Rough Cocklebur two days ago in the marshes at Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge I was happy to take photos of it.
Immature Yellow Warbler perched in a Cocklebur – Nikon D500, f11, 1/320, ISO 640, Nikkor 500mm VR with 1.4x TC, natural light
I should probably explain my aperture setting first… just before I photographed this young Yellow Warbler I had been taking images of Common Sunflowers along the auto tour route and at that time I wanted more depth of field because I wanted the flowers in focus from side to side so I set the aperture at f11. There were mosquitoes bothering me so I quickly put my camera into the carrier in the passenger seat of my Jeep and moved down the road to get away from them but because I was in a hurry to get away from the mosquitoes I forgot to change my aperture back to f7.1 which is where I generally leave it set at.
So when I came up on the warbler I assumed I had set the aperture back to f7.1 and didn’t check it before I started taking images of the warbler. I’m glad it was set at f11 because that meant not only getting the warbler in focus but most of the leaves, flowers, developing burs and the cocklebur stem it was perched on in focus too. A happy accident.
I knew that the immature Yellow Warbler was going to be small in the frame however I was okay with that, sometimes I like to show how small these birds are and leave a lot of habitat surrounding them if it is interesting enough and in this case I thought the texture of the leaves, burs and flowers were.
Immature Yellow Warbler foraging in a Cocklebur – Nikon D500, f11, 1/400, ISO 640, Nikkor 500mm VR with 1.4x TC, natural light
The immature Yellow Warbler poked its bill into the flowers above its head a few times before it flew away. When I blew these images up on my monitor I could see a spider web coming from the left side of the flower which made me wonder if the warbler was after the spider that created the web.
In the brief time I had this immature Yellow Warbler in my viewfinder I was able to take 19 images of it before it took off, I liked these two frames the best.
Life is good.