Bird of the Day – Dark-eyed (Slatey-backed) Junco

We still have Juncos in the area but the weather is suddenly warming up and doubtless they will be away in the next week or so … discrete little birds, nothing flashy about them, but they are smart.


Photography note: for years I have taken my bird photographs with a fast autofocusing Canon DSLR camera – with generally pretty good success but often slightly “soft” images. Can’t fault the camera so the lens has been criticised for the softness (and I’m not the only one to note this). Latterly, I am using the same lens – Canon’s 100-400mm L series mark-1 lens – on a Sony mirrorless camera. It simply doesn’t focus as fast on the Sony body so I am compelled to resort to manual focusing assisted by the “focus peaking” facility of these cameras. Takes a bit of getting used to but it’s pretty fast and suddenly this old lens is producing crisp images that I rarely achieved on the body it’s made for.  If you are having soft-lens problems give this a trial; I’m impressed.

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