Today’s Challenges

Early this morning we saw on the webcam that the Chimney Swift juveniles were flapping and flying so we thought there might be opportunities to get some images with raised wings. Just before we started for the Tower, they were resting in a clump. Being optimists we thought they would be active again at midday.

What we found was that they were on the wall in a position that made making images very difficult. The camera at the peek hole needed to be pointed right and down – sort of round a corner. The camera at the observation window needed to be pointed almost straight down.

The chick above moved up for a short time and was partially lit by the flashlight. The camera was more level for this image. The chick is looking more like an adult. We think that the ladder on the south wall of the “chimney” made shadows in strange places.

The early morning flight practice must have been tiring. Here two are seen napping while one is curious about the contortions the camera and photographer were making in order to point the lens down to the chicks. Closed eyelids are a silvery gray color.

Our presence does not seem to bother them. However, we have seen more preening on the monitor than when we are present. Certain sounds seem to get them yelling, such as a creaking floor board or a lawn tractor mowing around the tower or a call from an adult. They do not often respond to accidental bumps against walls.

The light from the flash bounced around differently with each image. Setting the white point in Lightroom was not consistent from image to image even with similar light temperatures. We prefer the cooler look but realize that many people like warmer images.

We hope they cling higher in the chimney when next we visit. They are much easier to photograph when the cameras do not have to practice yoga.

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