Little Egret in Flight

Little Egret in Flight

The Little Egrets roam the fields in huge numbers, so are sometimes taken for granted. They are, however, beautiful birds with lots of character. When the sun lines up behind them, and the dark background is there, that's when magic happens! This photo shows just how beautiful this bird can be when the sunlight shines through her feathers, and the background also benefits from the back-lighting. Care to guess what the small light dots behind the bird are? The answer is at the end of the text.

What do I like about this photo? The back-lighting, of course, makes everything more interesting. The dark background really makes the bird stand out, even with the light and colors trickling in, which only adds to the photo. I used a fast shutter speed (1/2500 of a second) to freeze the action, so the feathers are all tack sharp. I used an open aperture (f/6.3 - the most open my lens supports at the 400mm focal length that I was using) to have a shallow depth of field - so the bird is sharp, and the background is blurred. The light spots in the back become beautiful bright blurred circles.

What would I want to improve? I would have liked to have more space to the left of the bird, but unfortunately did not move quite fast enough to be able to achieve that...

Answer to the question above: the small light dots behind the bird are tiny flying insects, reflecting the sunlight.