Same Egret Different Day

This is the same egret as my last post but it was taken today. This time I was using my D5 at 11fps on the tripod but I was using a 300mm F2.8 wide open. Still at 1/2000 sec auto ISO went to 900 on an overcast afternoon after a rain. I have decided that egrets are one of the most difficult subjects to expose properly. Very hard to keep the bird white and retain all the detail in the feathers. Exposure compensation -1 stop in camera. Added back +.65 in Lightroom but backed highlights down -86 and I still had to burn the back. I do have to say however, I really like the detail in the wings.

What technical feedback would you like if any? All appreciated

What artistic feedback would you like if any? All appreciated

Pertinent technical details or techniques:

(If backgrounds have been removed, etc. please be honest with your techniques to help others learn)

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Kelly, this is a gorgeous backdrop and a gorgeous wing stroke. I also like the details in the wing but I think the highlight has been pulled back a little too far shifting the white into a grey (especially the neck area).

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Hi Kelly
You are right about working with the whites on a Egret. I think you could drop the f stop down to 5.6-7 and lower the ISO or increase the shutter speed. The -1 in the camera is good, maybe leave the exposure at 0 and highlight at -40. The framing and detail are vary nice. Keep shooting.

A very nice in-flight capture of this egret, Kelly! I also love the detail in those huge wings! I have the same exposure difficulty with the adult bald eagles. On sunny days if I save the highlights, the white feathers that aren’t directly lit end up grey (not to mention that the dark brown feathers in the shade turn black). The dynamic range is just too much for most cameras. All you can do is tweak it in post processing until you get a happy compromise.

Great wing position and detail in the egret, Kelly, and that background is utterly fantastic. Just a suggestion, but I’d get rid of the auto iso. That basically puts you right back into the mode where you have to keep dialing in exposure compensation and trying to guess what the difference between the background and the bird is going to do to it. For birds in flight, I’d go straight manual. I usually find something white that’s in the sun to set my exposure so I’m just barely seeing blinkies in the brightest place. In our world it’s usually not too difficult to find something white. Then all you have to do is be aware of changes in the light and readjust as needed. The only time I’ve found it to be a problem is on partly cloudy days where the sun’s going in and out like crazy.