Nature,  Photo Stories

Photo Story: Ringed-neck Pheasant Couple Foraging in the Snow

It was a long, cold Ohio winter.  The ground was snow covered for almost 10 weeks.  

Hen Pheasant in the Snow

Hen Pheasant in the Snow

Animals and birds had a tough time foraging with the snow covering the landscape for an extended duration.  This pheasant couple was foraging right along the side of the road in Killdeer Plains Wildlife Area in Western Ohio. 

Luckily the Pheasant hunting season closed on January 4th and these two were able to feed along the side of the road.  This Pheasant pair went about their business feeding while I photographed them with my Canon 5d Mark III and Canon 500mm f/4 – handheld.  It was like they knew the hunting season was over and I was hunting them with only a camera.

Male Pheasant in the Snow

Male Pheasant in the Snow

Photo Details

Camera: Canon 5D Mark III
Lens: Canon 500mm f/4 with 1.4x III Telephoto Extender
Focal Length: 700mm
ISO:  400
Aperture:   f/11
Shutter Speed: 1/1000 of a second
Exposure Compensation: +2/3
Lighting: Partly Cloudy Afternoon

Processing

  • Cropped the photo in Lightroom 5 and reduced the noise with the Luminance Noise Reduction Slider.
  • Applied the Lighten/Darken Center and Detail Extractor Filters in Color Efex Pro 4.
  • Cleaned up the foreground using the Healing Brush Tool in Photoshop CC 2014.
  • Used the Hummingbird Wings I filter in Topaz Clarity to add contrast, saturation and pop to the photo.
  • Used Viveza 2 to selectively lighten the darken the image.
  • Selectively removed noise from the photo using Topaz DeNoise.
  • Selectively sharpened the photo using the Unsharp Mask Filter in Photoshop CC 2014 reusing the layer mask from the previous step

Written by Martin Belan

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Killdeer Plains Wildlife Area, Ohio – A place to Photograph Raptors
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