|South Dakota Birds and Birding
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If there's one thing you learn by focusing on avian photography, it's patience. Virginia Rails, like most other rails, are considered very shy birds, birds that are perhaps more often heard than seen. Well, I don't find them particularly shy, as they'll tolerate your presence fairly well as they pick their way through wetland vegetation in search of insects and other prey. However...that certainly doesn't make them easy to photograph! Given the habitat they like to forage in, the biggest challenge is getting a clear shot of one, one not obscured by vegetation. This was an overcast, dreary morning, and I could hear Virginia Rails occasionally vocalizing. I plunked myself down next to a little clearing in the wetland vegetation, and waited. And waited. And waited. Eventually, that patience paid off as this guy passed through right in front of me, at one point no more than 10 feet from me.
Photo taken on May 27th, 2007 in northwestern Minnehaha County, South Dakota. Photo taken with Canon 20D, 400 5.6L.
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