David Alaniz Photography

Natures turn…….

Monthly Archives: April 2013

Indigo Bunting

It was a pleasant surprise to see the Indigo Bunting while visiting Laffite’s Cove in Galveston, Texas.  This one came in but stayed at a distance.  It flew in and out a few times before deciding to come in closer.   Finally, making it down to the water drip pool to drink some water and bath.  They are beautiful birds.

Nikon D4, Nikon 500mm, f/4, 1/500, ISO 1600


Nikon D4, Nikon 500mm, f/4, 1/2000, ISO 1600


Nikon D4, Nikon 500mm, f/4, 1/1250, ISO 1600


Put It On Take It Off

While sitting on the porch visiting with my mother in-law I noticed this little guy.  I took a quick shot with my 500mm and didn’t think anymore about him.  As I spoke with my mother in-law about different things and of course the changing weather….hot cold hot cold…I noticed the lizard molting.  I changed my lens to the Nikon 105mm.  Getting closer wasn’t easy.  Had to get into some bushes and hopefully not scare him.  Wellllll, he moved, so I moved.  Into the bushes I went some more hoping there weren’t any snakes nearby.  It was all done within a short amount of time.

Nikon D4, 500mm, f/7.1, ISO 200, EV -1


Nikon D4, 105mm, f/3.2, ISO 200, EV +1



Yellow Warbler

Lafitte’s Cove in Galveston is just one of the area’s prime locations for viewing neotropical migrants.  Laffite’s Cove Nature Society  (“LCNS”) does an excellent job of managing the property.  It’s a long flight across the Gulf of Mexico taking about 18 hours.  Some will “fall out”, dropping down for food and water before continuing on their migration.  This Yellow Warbler came over to the water drip and stayed for about one minute before disappearing into the woods.  I have lived here most of my life and this is the first time I have witness some of this event.  Had I only known what I was really missing.  Nature has so much to offer.

Nikon D4, Nikon 500mm, f/4, 1/320, ISO 1600


Nikon D4, Nikon 500mm, f/4, 1/250, ISO 1600


Nikon D4, Nikon 500mm, f/4, 1/400, ISO 1600


A New Day

Get out, spread your wings and enjoy what nature has to offer.  Lighting provided by Nature.

Nikon D4, Nikon 500mm, f/5.6, 1/500, -0.67, ISO 500, matrix metering


Tree Nesting

This was taken early morning.  The wind was gusting and there was a cloud cover.  I was really hoping for some more light but as the clouds thinned it had the effect of a big softbox used by portrait photographers.  I saw these nesting birds in a tree and thought it would make a nice photo.  After reviewing the pic it just didn’t give me a good feeling.  I didn’t like how cropping the picture would make it look.  After coming back to it several times I remembered what Rafael “RC” Concepcion had mention during a Photoshop class.  Apparently he had also been struggling with a photo and how to crop.  He mentioned a real odd crop size he used and I jotted it down in my notes.  Soooo, I tried it and thought it looked pretty good.

Nikon D4, Nikon 500mm, f/5.6, 1/1250, ISO 500, matrix metering



Breaking The Rules – Shooting Into The Sun

Most of what you read or hear about shooting into the sun comes with a Warning – “Don’t do it.”  Pointing into the sun with a telephoto lens is like using a magnifying glass.  Remember burning ants as a kid?  It could damage your vision and your camera.  So just let me say – “Don’t do it.”

Ok, now that I have that out-of-the-way, I Did It.  Shooting at High Island Smith Oaks Rookery early in the morning can render some beautiful captures.  Right before the sun comes up I’m looking for possibilities.  The possibility of certain birds in good locations.  Preferably isolated with no other bird in the picture.  Once I have some possibilities I am scanning constantly, hoping one or more will spread their wing(s) so the light can filter through.  That’s where the beauty is, the golden light.  There isn’t much time before the perfect light will be gone.

For this shot there was good activity to the left of the picture but not directly into the sun.  I pre-focused and just waited for the light.  That’s when this great egret caught my attention as it came in for a landing.  The D4 quickly focused as I fired off several shots.  I wasn’t sure how it was going to turn out until it was processed.  I hope you like it, I do.

Nikon D4, Nikon 500mm, f/16.0, 1/800, ISO 1000, matrix meter


Nesting – Incoming

This great egret gracefully lands as it brings in materials for making the nest.

Nikon D4, Nikon 500, f/5.6, ISO 500


Bird Hunter

I was visiting one of the Houston Audubon’s prime locations, Laffitte’s Cove in Galveston, Texas, for viewing neotropical migrants.  At one of the water drips, an old “Bird Hunter” came slithering into the water hole and disappeared beneath waiting for his next meal to come and drink or bathe.  One soon arrived and lighted on a nearby branch.  One woman said the snake looked like a cotton mouth and another said she thought it was a water moccasin.  I guess neither knew it was one and the same.   Me and my soft heart left not knowing if the “Bird Hunter” was ever successful.

Nikon D4, 500mm + 1.4tc, f/5.6, ISO 1600