Tarrywile Tree Swallow Tales

The Tree Swallows should be returning to Tarrywile Park anytime now! I can’t wait to get back there to photograph them. They are in my eyes, the hardest songbird to photograph because of their quick nature and plumage. Back on April 21, 2011, I had the best evening photographing these birds. I made my mistakes, which will not happen again this year. One of the big problems with these birds is their contrasty plumage. On their belly you have bright white. On their back and head, they have iridescent blue. This can be an exposure nightmare if you don’ know how to handle it. I have found that it is best to shoot for the whites, as the blacks can be recovered fairly easily in post.

Second is their quick nature. These birds are extremely fast, and when competing for nest boxes with themselves and bluebirds, it can be quite the experience. You have to click while you can, because that bird may not be there in a couple more seconds. I encourage everyone to get over to their local field and search out the Tree Swallows. They are loads of fun to shoot, and you will learn a lot about exposure!

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