Of batteries and birds

Some of you may wonder what I am talking about, others will no doubt understand perfectly if you know a birder who is also a photographer and especially if you are a birder who brings a camera to work, so to speak. Now I have often heard people tell me that I should make sure that my camera battery is fully charged before I go on a field trip. What they could not imagine they needed to tell me was that it would also be a good idea to make sure that if your battery is fully charged, it should be in the camera before you leave the house.

Imagine my disappointment last Sunday when I arrived at Stanley Park, only to discover that my viewfinder was unusually dark… which could only mean that… that… I had forgotten to place the fully charged battery in question into my camera, which suddenly became an expensive but rather useless paperweight in my bag! In the end, though, this thoughtless oversight did not matter so much for me because the bird population at Lost Lagoon (especially ducks) was unusually quiet. In fact, we did not see a single Wood Duck or Lesser Scaup, only Mallards, Canada Geese and a few American Widgeons. Well, we did also see a female Ruddy Duck, who almost managed to make us believe she was a Mallard, and several moulting Northern Shovelers. But we did see and hear several locally rare passerines in the bushes around the pond, including a White-throated Sparrow, which I had never seen on this side of the continent.

Had I actually brought my camera battery, here are some of the photos that I might have taken on that day (all of these pictures were taken in Stanley Park, but some were not taken at Lost Lagoon):

American Widgeon (male) | March 2012

American Widgeon (male) | March 2012

Anna's Hummingbird | August 2013

Anna’s Hummingbird (juvenile) | August 2013

Canada Goose | August 2013

Canada Goose | August 2013

Great Blue Heron | August 2013

Great Blue Heron | August 2013

Glaucus-winged Gull | August 2013

Glaucus-winged Gull | August 2013

Mallard (female) | April 2013

Mallard (female) | April 2013

Mallard (male) | February 2013

Mallard (male) | February 2013

Ruddy Duck (female) | September 2012

Ruddy Duck (female) | September 2012

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5 Responses to Of batteries and birds

  1. Thank you for the ping back…

  2. Great story… I have a feeling that the same sort of thing must have happened to me at least once. In fact, I am old enough to have been the proud owner of a Pentax K-1000: The nice thing with these cameras is that you could forget you batteries (or have them die on you) and you could still take some pictures if you were able to guess the right shutter speed and aperture for the lighting conditions at hand. That is no longer possible… but I still love my digital camera, I should point out, if only because I don’t have to pay a fortune for all that film!

  3. Rick Hollis says:

    Years ago, I took a non-birding boat tour of Baltimore Harbor. This is my home town and I had never see it from the water. I had my 33 mm [this was back when you had no choice but film]. I took 35 pictures and realized I was still taking them — I had no film in my camera. Interesting trip, no pictures.

  4. Pingback: Blog Birding #157 « ABA Blog

  5. María Paola says:

    Preciosas fotografías, felicitaciones, has capturado la hermosura de estas aves!