A few weeks ago I managed to capture a tiny Anna's Hummingbird in my very young flower garden.
When I planted the garden in late spring I was determined to have plants to attract birds, particularly hummingbirds, bees and butterflies.
With that in mind I planted 3 Salvia plants, some Black-eyed Susans, Crocosmia, Daylily, Echinacea (Coneflower), and Lavendars. Some plants did well some sort of! For a year one result I am pretty happy.
And then the hummingbird(s) started to visit. Yes! success. I believe this little one is a female.
~ Hummingbirds are among the smallest bird measuring 2 - 5 inches in length.
~ They weigh from 0.07 oz and up. The Annas male weighs around 0.15oz and the female 0.14oz.
~ Their wings beat around 12 beats per second to over 80 per second - depending on how small they are.
~ They have been measure at flying at up to 34 mph! Which is why it is really quite hard to photograph them.
~ The male Anna's hummingbird is the one with the colorful feathers which are iridescent.
~ The Aztec God of War - Huitzilopochtii is often depicted as a hummingbird.
~ The Aztec believed that fallen warriors would return to earth as hummingbirds and butterflies.
~ Aztec wore hummingbird talismans comprising of actual bird parts.
~ Hummingbirds are emblematic for vigor, energy and their beaks and how they use them symbolically mimic weapons of war.
For this series of images I used my Fujifilm X-T2 Mirrorless Camera
I normally set my ISO on Auto - one less thing for me to fiddle with!
I set the speed at 4000 because I had good light and these little blighters are super fast.
I kept my aperture at f/5.6 because I wanted to keep the depth of field shallow. There is a lot of competing imagery for this little picture.
I used my 100 - 400mmXF zoom lens at full zoom of 400mm.
My auto focus mode setting: instead of a single focal zone for gaining focus I had set my focus acquisition to a zone setting. This means I have the central cross hairs surrounded by some 'hand-off' areas all around for a total of 9 zone. I felt this gave me more opportunity of actually catching the bird in focus instead of just the flowers.
I had my camera in Continuous Mode with Continuous Light selected. CL means that I take multiple photos at a single press of the shutter.
I also have a back button focus.
It was quite difficult to focus on this fast moving bird. It was moving around in and out of the Salvia plants. So I had quite a few of really clear flower plants and a blurry bird!
Then the bird flew up to a mossy tree branch which is just above my garden for a rest. I was in the right place at the right time and caught some shots while it was briefly resting.