Take water, add Robins, instant enjoyment

Gazing out of the window, a little blue sky hinted among the grey.  That was enough to have the Earl Grey Tea poured, the cameras in the car and away we went.   Wanted to have a look along 29 Mile Road at the Western Treatment Plant.

This area has a number of paddocks recently ploughed and the Kites seem to favour the turned over ground. By the time we made it to the “Highway Lounge” at the Caltex Servo on Geelong Road, the little bit of blue has zipped itself up in the dense grey that was accumulating.  So we stopped for a quick Mocca, and then continued.  Only to be confronted with a misty rain.  “Turn back now, or go on?”  We went, and the rain continued, and we went and the rain continued. Exposures of a Week @ f/4 seemed to be the order of the day.

So reaching the Beach Road corner, we pondered a very early mark. Then a flash of red, and another and the paddock opposite was covered in Flame Robins.   Well, covered is such an all encompassing word, so its probably better to use dotted here and there. In the end we found four males, at least as many females and several juveniles in varying states of moult.

I propped the 300mm ff/2.8 with a TC 2.0 (Making 600mm) on a post, and wished I’d been clever enough to include a beanbag.  The rain changed to a drizzle between downpours.  The birds seemed to ignore it an hunted happily.  Feeling pretty confident in the rain, they chose to ignore us pretty much completely and we were able to move about with them without them fleeing.

In the end being sodden completely and beginning to worry about the cameras getting drowned, we called it quits.    And by then the small meagre light had been completely swallowed up in dark and ominous low cloud, which soon turned to massive downpour. Time for home.

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4 thoughts on “Take water, add Robins, instant enjoyment

  1. Hi David, this sounds to me like “been there, done that”. I had the similar experience a year ago. Still, the red lights in the grey scenery look great and the photo you’ve posted on Flickr just confirms that sometimes bad weather is good to get some great & interesting shots.
    I don’t leave comments too often but always enjoy your posts and read them all. Thanks!
    Adam

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  2. G,day Adam, we really were on a recce mission than anything. I’ve seen Flames down at the treatment plant, but never had the time or the opportunity to work with them at close distances. Its why I’ve always enjoyed the time at Woodlands as they are much more relaxed in the shelter of the grey box forest. But today, they were happy to accommodate us.
    The weather. I suppose I’ve developed a bit of the birds attitude to it all. You get wet, then you dry out.
    Enjoy, look forward to seeing some of your shots soon.

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  3. Well, I’m sure the weather at present is much better here in France than at the WTP – although it’s raining this evening – but your birds are SOOO much better! Currently Black Kites are the order of the day here, hunting over the canals in the water stirred up by the traffic, or in the surrounding fields where the farmers are cutting hay.

    Cheers, Rob

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    1. G.day Rob, well done on the sitting in France. Hope you are able to make some great shots, and look forward to reading of them in due course.

      Good luck, as we watch the rain fall for yet another day.

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