Whilst I'm contemplating writing up a series of posts to form a trip report (they are always such a great success!) here are a few photos that I have managed to get round to processing in the odd free gap. In short I did mostly remember how to use a camera, what type of photograph I Iike and how to get it. And now that I am back I am also having to remember how to convert and edit them. It does not get any easier!
It was strange, but in a nice way, just sitting down quietly and waiting for a bird to land where I hoped it would land. When I go out birding these days I no longer take a camera at all, I am back to where I started - bins locally with the addition of a scope if I go further afield. But actually (unless you are supremely lucky) if you are trying to take a vaguely artistic photograph then that requires a slow approach. And that slow approach, as well as the need to be a lot closer than non-photographers realise, results in quite fabulous views of the birds. I still don't understand bird photographers who don't own binoculars, surely they're a key piece of kit to observe what is happening before you start, but there is definitely something to be said for getting tucked up in one spot and merging with the scene. Mick and I managed this several times on our trip, most notably with a group of Canaries returning to the same clump of Agave to feed fledglings. But it also worked with a very friendly Berthelot's Pipit close to Madeira's highest peak, and with some endemic Trocaz Pigeons in a botanic garden. Oh, and with a frog as well.