the importance of preparation
This afternoon i was sitting down at my table, having lunch, when one of my dogs started barking and howling, jumping up and down in front of the french doors to the garden.
I stood up to check what was going on and came eye-to-eye with this blue heron.....
It just stood there, giving me the once over, totally unimpressed by my presence, then looked away, to the neighbor's garden, where - how on earth did it know this? - there is a small koi-filled pond.
It suddenly flew up and landed on top of the hedge, where it had a perfect vantage point to check out the pond's offerings.
I moved closer to the door and was able to get a good look at (and a good shot of) it's legs, breast and beak.
It decided to really get a proper sense of the place and stalked over the foliage to view the pond from another angle.
It probably concluded that the net over the pond was too much of a problem, because it flew up and off and disappeared from sight.....
I was almost perfectly prepared for this to happen: i always have my Olympus lying around, with the 40-150mm tele zoom attached, set to aperture priority, the largest lens-opening (f/4.0 to 5.6, depending on the focal length), bright or cloudy WB, ISO between 200-400, which provides a relatively shallow DoF and makes movement visible, instead of freezing it, because of the longer shutter speed.
I usually charge the battery overnight and insert it as soon as i get down in the morning. When i extract my memory card to upload shots to my computer, i immediately put a 'fresh' on in and erase or format it.
While shooting the heron i noticed that my battery was running empty. I had forgotten to reload it the night before..... I was very lucky the power held out until the heron flew away, although the autofocus was already giving me problems :-() I will not make this mistake again!