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Big Bird

The Squirrelly Eye
"The Squirrelly Eye"
Olympus E-3 with Zuiko Digital 50-200mm
1/1000s, f/4.5, ISO 200, 169mm

The Central Florida Research Park, next to the University of Central Florida, is nestled cozily in wetland habitat. In early February, as the central Florida weather quickly warms, birds such as these Florida sandhill cranes begin to congregate around the small open lakes in the area. I found three near a road with a lot traffic speeding by. I don't know who was more at risk, me trying to cross the road to get close enough to take the photos or the cranes who might have wandered out in the road.

Walking Away
"Walking Away"
Olympus E-3 with Zuiko Digital 50-200mm
1/1600s, f/4.5, ISO 200, 83mm

This one, the one sitting in the first photo, finally had enough of me and walked away. But not before giving me the stink-eye for bothering him/her/it.

Head Scratcher
"Head Scratcher"
Olympus E-3 with Zuiko Digital 50-200mm
1/400s, f/4.5, ISO 200, 200mm

This pair kept to themselves. It was interesting to see the nearer crane scratching around the head, sending bits of fluff flying everywhere, looking like little motes of sunshine.

All three were taken with the Olympus E-3 and the HG Zuiko Digital 50-200mm zoom. This is the kind of situation where the E-3 and any of the SWD lenses really shine. The E-P2 with its contrast detect autofocus (CDAF) can't focus fast enough to keep up with the birds. But the "old-school" E-3 certainly can.

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