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Ray Hennessy
9,936 followers -
Nature photographer in my spare time, wedding photographer for a living, Photoshopper since forever.
Nature photographer in my spare time, wedding photographer for a living, Photoshopper since forever.

9,936 followers
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Golden Sun and Wood Duck ~ A drake Wood Duck cruises right in front of the sun as it shimmers on the water's surface. This location has a perfect setup to create these interesting backgrounds in the morning. The water runs over some shallow rocks which creates ripples and bubbles on the surface that in turn show up as points of light in the photo. I like that it breaks up a rather boring flat background even if it can be somewhat distracting to the subject. Taken near the Valley Green Inn on Wissahickon Creek in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania where the Wood Ducks are incredibly tame. ~ 3/12/17 - 1/400 sec at f/4.0 on Manual ~ ISO1250 at 500 mm ~ using a 500 mm f/4 on a Nikon D4S ~ Please view large and feel free to share. #bird #birdphotos #birdphotography #birds #birdsgallery #birds4all #birdsinfocus #birdlovers #birdloversworldwide #birdloversandwildlife #hqspbirds #btbprobirds #wildlife #wildlifephotography #wildphotographer #wildlifephotos #nature #naturephotography #naturephotos #naturephotographer #woodduck #drake #colorful #waterfowl #philly
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Harlequin Trio ~ It took me a few minutes to carefully work my way down the jetty rocks to get a lower angle on the Harlequin Ducks that were swimming around. It was just minutes after sunrise when this trio of drakes climbed up onto a rock barely above the water's surface. I chose to keep the exposure on the darker side to make it more about the shape of the ducks and to really make the splashing water stand out. I really loved the golden glow on the water from the early morning sun. There was just enough detail to slightly see the rusty color on their side and to barely see their eyes. I also really liked how they all had their heads facing the same way. Taken at Barnegat Light State Park along the central New Jersey coast. ~ 3/17/17 - 1/1250 sec at f/5.6 on Manual ~ ISO400 at 420 mm ~ using a 300 mm f/4 + 1.4x TC on a Nikon D4S ~ Please view large and feel free to share. #bird #birdphotos #birdphotography #birds #birdsgallery #birds4all #birdsinfocus #birdlovers #birdloversworldwide #birdloversandwildlife #hqspbirds #btbprobirds #wildlife #wildlifephotography #wildphotographer #wildlifephotos #nature #naturephotography #naturephotos #naturephotographer #nj #jersey #harlequinduck #waterfowl #duck #drake 
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Flying Little Blue Heron ~ Nothing too special here, just a nice looking Little Blue Heron flying by in the morning sun. I liked the overall colors in this image including the background with the bit of water at the bottom. I took this after another unsuccesful morning trying to photograph Blue-winged Teal. I had set up for the Teal in first light and after roughly an hour without seing a single duck within range I got bored and started walking around. I eventually came upon this pond with a lot of wading birds feeding in the shallows. I sat along the edge of the pond for a bit and while there this Little Blue Heron flew right in front of me and I got this shot. Many times the planned shots don't turn out so it's great when something else gives you an opportunity. Taken at Vero Wetlands in Vero Beach, Florida. ~ 1/26/17 - 1/1600 sec at f/5.6 on Aperture priority ~ 0 EV ~ AUTO ISO400 at 700 mm ~ using a 500 mm f/4 + 1.4x TC on a Nikon D4S ~ Please view large and feel free to share. #bird #birdphotos #birdphotography #birds #birdsgallery #birds4all #birdsinfocus #birdlovers #birdloversworldwide #birdloversandwildlife #hqspbirds #btbprobirds #wildlife #wildlifephotography #wildphotographer #wildlifephotos #nature #naturephotography #naturephotos #naturephotographer #littleblueheron #florida #birdsinflight
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Heads and Tails ~ A pair of Northern Pintails feeding in the shallow water. I got lucky enough to catch one with its head up and another with its tail up searching for food underwater. I photographed the Pintails for a couple of hours on this morning as they swam all around. They were more difficult to capture then I thought since when feeding they spend more time with their heads underwater then above. I really had to watch for their head to come up and hopefully have them facing the right direction for a good photo which was not very often. Still it was a fun morning watching these beautiful ducks do their thing in front of me while I lay in a hide. Taken at John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. ~ 12/2/16 - 1/1250 sec at f/5.6 on Manual ~ ISO320 at 700 mm ~ using a 500 mm f/4 + 1.4x TC on a Nikon D4S ~ Please view large and feel free to share. #bird #birdphotos #birdphotography #birds #birdsgallery #birds4all #birdsinfocus #birdlovers #birdloversworldwide #birdloversandwildlife #hqspbirds #btbprobirds #wildlife #wildlifephotography #wildphotographer #wildlifephotos #nature #naturephotography #naturephotos #naturephotographer #northernpintail #philadelphia #waterfowl #duck
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Female Wood Duck Portrait ~ It's not often you have female waterfowl that are this colorful, most are rather drab and very brown. Even with all the colors in this hen Wood Duck she pales in comparison to her male counterpart which seems to be the norm in the duck world. This of course doesn't mean she isn't beautiful in her own right. I really like the white mask around that brilliant yellow eye ring, of course the vibrant blue and purple hues on the wings and the subtle splashes of soft green tint on her back and top of her head. When you get to see one this close through the lens it sure is a treat. This was from the morning I specifically set up to photograph the Wood Ducks with backlight and it worked nicely in this case to give her a little glow around the head and back and a bit of sparkle to the water. These are very tame ducks photographed at Valley Green Inn along the Wissahickon Creek in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. ~ 3/12/17 - 1/500 sec at f/4.0 on Manual ~ 0 EV ~ ISO1250 at 500 mm ~ using a 500 mm f/4 on a Nikon D4S ~ Please view large and feel free to share. #bird #birdphotos #birdphotography #birds #birdsgallery #birds4all #birdsinfocus #birdlovers #birdloversworldwide #birdloversandwildlife #hqspbirds #btbprobirds #wildlife #wildlifephotography #wildphotographer #wildlifephotos #nature #naturephotography #naturephotos #naturephotographer #woodduck #female #hen #portrait #close #philly
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Sandpiper Outline ~ Not too long after sunrise I came upon a group of Purple Sandpipers, Dunlin and Ruddy Turnstones at the very end of the jetty. WIth the sun behind them I began to look for a way to create a dramatic rim-lit photo of one of the cooperative shorebirds. As long as you move slowly they allow for very close approches so I had lots of opportunity. When this bird moved out and was standing right in front of another jetty rock that was completley in shade I had my perfect lighting setup. Even better this bird began to call over and over again so I was able to get a beak open shot. Over and over again this Purple Sandpiper opened its beak wide to call out and every time would slightly face away from me, finally after some waiting it turned its head for a perfect profile and I got this image. I had no idea Purple Sandpipers had serrations in their beak but you can clearly see that on the underside of the top beak. The line of yellow-green came from some seaweed growing on the top of the foreground rock glowing in the early sun. Taken at Barnegat Light Jetty along the central New Jersey coastline. ~ 3/17/17 - 1/800 sec at f/5.6 on Manual ~ ISO400 at 420 mm ~ using a 300 mm f/4 + 1.4x TC on a Nikon D4S ~ Please view large and feel free to share. #bird #birdphotos #birdphotography #birds #birdsgallery #birds4all #birdsinfocus #birdlovers #birdloversworldwide #birdloversandwildlife #hqspbirds #btbprobirds #wildlife #wildlifephotography #wildphotographer #wildlifephotos #nature #naturephotography #naturephotos #naturephotographer #nj #jersey #purplesandpiper #backlight #rimlight #dramatic #dark 
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Low Flying Pelican ~ This was the type of photo I tried many times to capture of the Brown Pelicans in Florida. For years I have loved watching them flly and glide very low over the water's surface, especially when it's calm and they get really close. I have shared others that were lower but there was something about the soft overcast light and slight wing tip reflection that I enjoyed about this one. It was also a nice looking adult that cruised by the shoreline I was sitting on. Taken in Sebastian, Florida along the Indian River. ~ 1/18/17 - 1/600 sec at f/5.6 on Manual ~ ISO640 at 700 mm ~ using a 500 mm f/4 + 1.4x TC on a Nikon D4S ~ Please view large and feel free to share. #bird #birdphotos #birdphotography #birds #birdsgallery #birds4all #birdsinfocus #birdlovers #birdloversworldwide #birdloversandwildlife #hqspbirds #btbprobirds #wildlife #wildlifephotography #wildphotographer #wildlifephotos #nature #naturephotography #naturephotos #naturephotographer #brownpelican #birdsinflight #florida
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Egret Blastoff ~ After a morning spent trying and mostly failing to photograph waterfowl I slowly worked my way back to my car. I came upon another pond absolutely filled with wading birds. Great Egrets, like this one, Wood Storks, Tri-colored Herons, Snowy Egrets, Roseate Spoonbills, Little Blue Herons, and both White and Glossy Ibis. There were hundreds of birds on this one pond. I slowly made my way down to the edge of the water and setup for flight and action shots since many of the birds were flying around and running in the shallow water chasing fish. I was locked in on this Great Egret when it decided to takeoff and thankfully I was ready for the action. It was late in the morning at just after 9am and the light was pretty harsh but I had the sun almost directly behind me and I had my settings dialed in to expose for the bright white bird. This let the background go a bit darker which I think worked ok for this shot. For me the action outweighed the less then ideal lighting. I really liked the legs splashing out of the water and the Wood Stork you could just make out on the right. Taken at Vero Wetlands in Vero Beach, Florida. ~ 1/12/17 - 1/5000 sec at f/4.0 on Manual ~ ISO200 at 500 mm ~ using a 500 mm f/4 on a Nikon D4S ~ Please view large and feel free to share. #bird #birdphotos #birdphotography #birds #birdsgallery #birds4all #birdsinfocus #birdlovers #birdloversworldwide #birdloversandwildlife #hqspbirds #btbprobirds #wildlife #wildlifephotography #wildphotographer #wildlifephotos #nature #naturephotography #naturephotos #naturephotographer #greategret #birdsinflight #takeoff #florida
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Get Away! ~ This drake Wood Duck was letting the other males in the area know who was boss. He was chasing another duck that was just out of the frame to the right who created a big splash trying to get away which created the sparkling water in the air. The early morning sun shining from behind the ducks really lit up the water drops to give a unique look. I also really liked how you could see the serrations in the bill of the wood duck with his beak open like that. I've come to learn that if you spend any amount of time with a group of waterfowl you are bound to get some interesting interactions. Ducks seem to be very social birds and these Wood Ducks especially were vocal and non-stop interacting so it was a joy to spend a couple hours with them. Taken at Valley Green Inn on the Wissahickon Creek in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania with a group of very tame Wood Ducks that are habituated to humans. ~ 3/12/17 - 1/640 sec at f/4.0 on Manual ~ ISO1250 at 500 mm ~ using a 500 mm f/4 on a Nikon D4S ~ Please view large and feel free to share. #bird #birdphotos #birdphotography #birds #birdsgallery #birds4all #birdsinfocus #birdlovers #birdloversworldwide #birdloversandwildlife #hqspbirds #btbprobirds #wildlife #wildlifephotography #wildphotographer #wildlifephotos #nature #naturephotography #naturephotos #naturephotographer #woodduck #waterfowl #duck #male #drake #calling #splash #backlight #philly
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Lone Harlequin Drake ~ As is usually the case with photographing waterfowl, a great perspective can be had by getting down on their level. Unfortunately during many of my visits to Barnegat Light State Park that can be a rather daunting task to achieve. On this particular morning I arrived before sunset to a very low tide which exposed many of the lower jetty rocks. I spent the first 30 minutes of sunlight trying to capture unique backlit photos of the Harlequin Ducks then turned my attention to getting some nice front lit portraits. I came upon this individual who found this small rock that was just barely above the water. He was with a small flock of 7 or 8 others and he was the furthest out from the jetty. Once I got somewhat close to the group I saw an exposed rock that was down at their level and would hopefully put me in a good position for photos of this fella and the group. I carefully worked my way down the rocks and settled in on my own rock barely out of the water. I quickly realized my chosen rock gave me a nice low perspective and began to shoot. My first set of photos of this drake had his head right around the horizon in the background and while nice, I really wanted to get lower. One of the reasons I wanted to get lower was to get some water in the foreground which would give the perspective of almost being in the water with the bird. The second reason was to put his head a good bit over the horizon, almost looking slightly up at him which I thought would give him more of an impressive look. I was shooting my very lightweight lens setup so I was able to hold the camera in one hand and hover out over the edge of the rock while I used my left hand to hold onto the rock for balance. The waves were very small on this morning but still there so I waited for one to wash up higher on the duck's rocky perch and fired off a sequence. I ended up getting the exact look I was going for which gives the impression I was in the water with the bird, and to me having him slightly over the horizon gives this Harlequin Duck an strong appearance. I scrambled back onto my rock after this sequence and spent the next 15 minutes just watching and hanging out with this group of Harlequin Ducks about 25 feet away. For the majority of the morning it was just me and the birds out on the jetty, just the way I like it! Taken at Barnegat Light State Park along the central New Jersey coastline. ~ 3/17/17 - 1/1250 sec at f/5.6 on Manual ~ ISO400 at 420 mm ~ using a 300 mm f/4 PF + 1.4x TC on a Nikon D4S ~ Please view large and feel free to share. #bird #birdphotos #birdphotography #birds #birdsgallery #birds4all #birdsinfocus #birdlovers #birdloversworldwide #birdloversandwildlife #hqspbirds #btbprobirds #wildlife #wildlifephotography #wildphotographer #wildlifephotos #nature #naturephotography #naturephotos #naturephotographer #nj #jersey #harlequinduck #waterfowl #drake
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