Osprey in Flight

While visiting at Huntington Beach State Park, Murrells Inlet, SC last week, this Osprey flew right in front of me while the late afternoon light bathed him.

Canon 7D Mark II, Canon 100-400mm L lens at 400mm.

Handheld at f8, 1/1250, ISO 200

Comments and suggestions are welcome. Thank you.


The sharpness you have is quite nice. Details in the plumage are good. Exposure on the Osprey is good. I’m not a big fan of “blue sky” backgrounds for flight shots as it doesn’t provide a sense of place. I know it isn’t always possible to include environment with flight.

When you post here, you don’t need to delete the lines beginning with ### . Those lines will become headers in then post for Equipment Information, Camera settings, etc. Also really helps to ask for the kind of feedback you’re interested in on your image.

Thanks for posting your image!! We’re off and running with the new site and it is exciting!!

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I like this Shirley. Excellent detail and exposure. Well composed. I tend to agree with Keith with respect to the blue sky issue. Another thing you could do with this would be to enlarge the bird and have a little less sky. At iso-200, you should be able to do that. I think it’s very difficult to get good shots of ospreys because they tend to fly high above water bodies while searching for food which creates your sky issue unless they’re flying low over the water which I find is unusual in my area.

Thank you, Keith and David. Appreciate the feedback. I do have one with a pine tree behind him, which I liked as well, but he was closer to me here in this shot. I may post the other one sometime later.

Shirley, I have shot Bolsa Chica dozens of times and have never gotten a shot of an Osprey as good as this one. Kudos for you getting the shot. The challenge there is that we are so far from a decent background we settle for the sky. I wonder how the bird would look if you burned the portion of his wing, tail and head there illuminated.

Nice capture, Shirley. Great wingspread and looks really sharp. If you have the pixels to crop further, I think increasing the size of the Osprey in the frame would reduce the amount of blue space. I personally like flight shots with blue sky, however, I find cropping in tight is necessary to put all of the emphasis on the bird.

You got a nice and sharp image of the osprey in pleasant light, Shirley. I like the wingspread and fanned tail as well. I assume this is full-frame. In that case you can make a crop with the subject larger in the frame.

This is a resubmit to include all (I think) of your wonderful suggestions. No, it was not quite full frame in the original submission, so it may not be enough pixels to look right. I have another image that I like of the osprey flying in front of a pine tree, so it may be the best of the two, because it’s not so much blue sky.

Excellent sharpness and exposure, Shirley. While the blue sky isn’t all that interesting, it is where one sees them, so I don’t have as much of a problem with it as others. I do think in the recrop you could have taken some off both the left and bottom to emphasize the upward path of the bird.