Some days ago when I was hiking, I spotted a bird of prey far up in the air. It was flying really high, in circles, like 100 meters or 200 meters high maybe. I couldn’t see with my eyes what kind of bird it might be. Also, I know the limitations of the 300mm focal length of my Tamron lens. I know that when I take a photo in these conditions, I will need to do a heavy crop. But in the end, photography is also about curiosity. You simply want to find out what kind of bird it is, thus you take the photo nonetheless. It’s not the first time I photographed birds of prey under these conditions. I did for example photograph a red kite once and I also was in one and another situation to photograph white-tailed eagles.
So, yeah, heavy cropping is needed in these situations, but it’s still like a trophy when you have been able to spot these birds high up in the air and when you find out at home what kind of bird it was. That’s really what photography is about for me too. Being active, opening the eyes and observing things around you. So, when I was at home and when I did heavy cropping with the image at the top, I realized that I photographed a Common Buzzard (Buteo buteo). It’s strange that it is the first time I photographed one. They’re not uncommon here but the issue is that they often fly extremely high (on average at 400 meters but they can go up to 1000 meters and even higher on warm and clear days).
They do mostly fly over fields or near forest edges and they hunt rodents like mice. But sometimes they do also eat insects and frogs or injured rabbits and even small birds. When they watch for prey, they fly or glide in circles and as many birds of prey, their eyes are capable of finding and following prey from 3 kilometers distance. Imagine that! Superpowers! I find them very interesting but as said, they’re difficult to photograph in the wild. So, then again, that’s why I had to crop the image but the noise reduction feature in photo editing tools helps a lot to make it look ok. I hope you liked the image.