Tess… Chiggers… and Raptors…

Last year Tess joined me to shoot the raptors. Little did we know that we would be eaten alive by chiggers. E-mails flew back and forth about these strange bites that were popping up all over our bodies two days after the shoot, and I do believe we even took a few photos of them to compare. Yep… chiggers for sure! So when this year’s raptor shoot was announced, I asked her if she was interested in going and in spite of our chigger experience she immediately said yes but we did spray ourselves with “Off” in hopes that it would prevent further problems.

Tess has a 100-400mm lens and after letting me try hers, I was lusting for the lens as it has good zoom range. The only drawback is the weight. I had a weak moment after using hers and got the same lens and I must say, I think our bird photography has improved as a result. We’ve had some practice shooting the birds at White Rock Lake which is always fun but we could never get as close to birds in the wild as we do at the Blackland Raptor Center, and I think that is why she immediately said she wanted to return. It is a great opportunity for close-up bird shots regardless of the lens you are shooting with.

So let me share with you some of Tess’s favorite shots from Photo Day…

Red Tailed Hawk (Photo by Tess)

Red Tailed Hawk
(Photo by Tess)


Red Tailed Hawk (Photo by Tess)

Red Tailed Hawk
(Photo by Tess)


American Kestrel (Photo by Tess)

American Kestrel
(Photo by Tess)


Great Horned Owl (Photo by Tess)

Great Horned Owl
(Photo by Tess)


Great Horned Owl (Photo by Tess)

Great Horned Owl
(Photo by Tess)


American Kestrel (Photo by Tess)

American Kestrel
(Photo by Tess)

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15 thoughts on “Tess… Chiggers… and Raptors…

  1. Incredible photos Tessie! I do love how you capture the action and by cropping make it look like you have caught a bird in flight. Love those shots of the red tailed hawk too. They are all so sharp and the eyes in excellent focus!

    I did have just a few chigger bites but not sure if they were from there or from White Rock Lake or from Lake Ray Hubbard, but nothing like last year’s bites!

    So… shall we do it again next year?

  2. Tess,
    Looks like you are becoming a pro at using your “big” lens! Nice shots of the raptors!! My favorites are the “American Kestrels!” I like how they are posed and the nice green blurred background in one of them and the tree branch in the other. Well done!

    • Thanks so much for the kind comment Lorraine. I appreciate it. You need to be with us next time. It is too much fun.

  3. Great photos Tess!!
    I love the close up of the American Kestrel the colors are amazing!
    I never got a good photo, so I guess I have to plan to go back!!

    • Thanks Donna. Yes, we need to go back next year and still wear our rain boots, to get us away from chiggers.
      Lala, I think the chigger bites that you had was not from Raptors or might have had been since you were the one who was not using the rain boots.

  4. Your collection is very nice, Tess. My favorite is the Kestrel. I recently shot a longhorn along the roadside and the next day I nervously thought I had bed bugs. About how many are there shooting these birds with y’all?

    • Thank you rebeKah. There were probably close to a hundred people who were there. They only accept two hundred photographers but last year ware pretty much the same number as this year.

  5. Very nice photos. I really think the American Krestel is so beautiful. I want to go next year to see these amazing raptors. I will definitely need to buy rain boots too

    • Yes Debbie, you need to join the crazies next year. It’s too much fun and a rain boots is a must I think. LOL.
      Thanks for the nice comment.

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