Pelicans and more — October 25, 2021 — the video files

There will be a separate post for the photos, but for now, a quick post of the videos

I thought all the pelicans had left the area, but during a drive to Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge on October 25th, I happily saw that was not the case.

This first video is a compilation of a few clips (not in slow motion – 1080p) of Pelicans at the Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge on October 25th. It shows incoming pelicans joining a group of gathered pelicans, some shoveler ducks (I think), seagulls, and the little birds flying around are Tree Swallows.

The last bit of that video shows another group of pelicans roughly 0.7 miles from where I was filming.

Next up, a slow-motion video compilation of a few clips shot in slow motion with the Nikon P900. The P900 limits resolution to 720p when shooting in slow motion.

Also, the P900 is slow to update the focus when the subject moves (when shooting slow-motion), hence why the last subject goes out of focus as it gets nearer.

Next, the same sandbank used by the pelicans was also in use by seagulls and Tree Swallows. Lots of Tree Swallows were flying around, and many more were grounded and looking like they were foraging. In case it’s not evident, it was quite windy and chilly.

I mention October 25th was a windy and chilly day at Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge … but you wouldn’t know it because I was filming downwind and from inside the car.

This next video is me stepping out of the car and filming the opposite side of the lake. The video is short because I didn’t want to stand out there too long.

That far group of pelicans was between three and four miles away . . . the smaller group to the left (when I zoomed out) was about one-and-a-half-mile away. The wind made it difficult to keep the camera (and me) steady. It was around 50° F, so the windchill was not insignificant.

Getting back in the car, I was doing one last video of the group I had been filming, and . . . as I filmed, the entire group of pelicans perked up and faced northwest (you can see it at the beginning of the video) . . . and some took off. I thought (hoped) all of them would go at once, but they decided to stagger their departure.

Funny thing, each time some took off, it looked like a lot of birds left, but the group seemed the same size. It wasn’t, of course, and eventually, only a small group remained . . . and they decided to float away, the wind at their back (this video is the combination of two clips; one showing the flying, the other the floating away).

After the pelicans left, I saw a Great Blue Heron fishing by the shore. Normally, I can’t get close enough to herons before they fly off, but in this case, with the P900’s long zoom and shooting from the car, I got some decent video (decent for me). In this clip, the heron has a 50% success rate, catching a small fish with one of its lunges.

Imagine if we had to get our food like that; lunging at our plates.

This next clip is in slow-motion.

I like filming in slow motion both because you see a bit more of the action, but also because it ‘smooths’ out the small motion of my hands (this is handheld). Plus, I get to add music.

This is the same heron as before, and again, thanks to the P90’s zoom, I could safely film unobserved from the car parked a distance away. That’s about half-speed. The P900 does quarter-speed recordings but they are only at 480p resolution.

I add music because the P900 doesn’t record sound while in slow motion mode.

You can go to this LINK if you want to watch the videos on Vimeo. That link is a showcase of just these videos and it’s sharable (as are all the videos … and this post).

That’s it. This post has ended . . . except for the stuff below.


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