Cormorant nesting behaviour

A few days ago I visited Hamilton harbour to capture some images of cormorant nesting behaviour.

NOTE: Click on images to enlarge.

Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 224mm, efov 604mm, f/6.3, 1/2000, ISO-640
Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 224mm, efov 604mm, f/6.3, 1/2000, ISO-640

It was a nice, sunny morning with the sun at my back which allowed for decent exposures of the various birds flying to their nests.

Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 160mm, efov 431mm, f/6.3, 1/2000, ISO-360
Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 160mm, efov 431mm, f/6.3, 1/2000, ISO-360

Since it is early in the season the cormorants are busy repairing and building their nests, creating an abundance of opportunities to capture images of birds in flight.

Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 220mm, efov 592mm, f/5.6, 1/3200, ISO-220
Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 220mm, efov 592mm, f/5.6, 1/3200, ISO-220

To try to capture as many potentially usable images as possible I shot hand-held using AF-C with subject tracking at 15fps. My Nikon 1 V2 held focus very well as you can see from the next four images captured with the same AF-C burst.

Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 170mm, efov 459mm, f/6.3, 1/2500, ISO-720
Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 170mm, efov 459mm, f/6.3, 1/2500, ISO-720
Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 170mm, efov 459mm, f/6.3, 1/2500, ISO-720
Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 170mm, efov 459mm, f/6.3, 1/2500, ISO-720
Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 170mm, efov 459mm, f/6.3, 1/2500, ISO-720
Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 170mm, efov 459mm, f/6.3, 1/2500, ISO-720
Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 170mm, efov 459mm, f/6.3, 1/2500, ISO-720
Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 170mm, efov 459mm, f/6.3, 1/2500, ISO-720

There were so many good image opportunities that I filled several 16GB cards during my two hour visit to the harbour. Here are more examples of images taken from the same AF-C burst shot at 15fps, using subject tracking.

Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 173mm, efov 466mm, f/5.3, 1/2500, ISO-280
Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 173mm, efov 466mm, f/5.3, 1/2500, ISO-280
Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 173mm, efov 466mm, f/5.3, 1/2500, ISO-280
Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 173mm, efov 466mm, f/5.3, 1/2500, ISO-280
Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 173mm, efov 466mm, f/5.3, 1/2500, ISO-280
Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 173mm, efov 466mm, f/5.3, 1/2500, ISO-280
Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 173mm, efov 466mm, f/5.3, 1/2500, ISO-280
Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 173mm, efov 466mm, f/5.3, 1/2500, ISO-280
Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 173mm, efov 466mm, f/5.3, 1/2500, ISO-280
Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 173mm, efov 466mm, f/5.3, 1/2500, ISO-280
Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 173mm, efov 466mm, f/5.3, 1/2500, ISO-280
Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 173mm, efov 466mm, f/5.3, 1/2500, ISO-280

There were also ample opportunities to capture cormorants in flight while carrying nesting materials.

Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 198mm, efov 534mm, f/5.6, 1/2500, ISO-400
Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 198mm, efov 534mm, f/5.6, 1/2500, ISO-400
Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 198mm, efov 534mm, f/5.6, 1/2500, ISO-400
Nikon 1 V2 + 1 Nikon CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 @ 198mm, efov 534mm, f/5.6, 1/2500, ISO-400

Even though I’ve captured thousands of images of cormorants over the past several years I always find spending time at Hamilton harbour during their nesting season to be an enjoyable way to practice my bird-in-flight hand-holding technique.

If you’d like to see some additional images of cormorants you can view them by using the YouTube link below.

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3 thoughts on “Cormorant nesting behaviour”

  1. I use 64GB cards in my J5s, and 128GB cards in my D810. I almost never have to change cards in the field. With the current prices for memory, buying high-capacity cards is cheap.

    Great images, as always.

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