Anxious to get a little more trigger time in with the Sigma 150-500mm lens, I head on down to Fremont's Lake Elizabeth (again) for some birding action. It's still nesting season for the birds there, even though the young Night Heron hatchlings look to be getting pretty big. A handful of Canada Geese were around, and some of them had little ones with them too. It's not hard to spot the birds, the tough part is getting in position to catch them in flight. For that, it's a waiting and guessing game. Most of the action shots I got that day were from Canada Geese, Great Egrets, Night Herons, and Snowy Egrets.
A few words about the Sigma 150-500mm OS lens. Most people would probably use a tripod or monopod with it. But where's the fun in that? :-) It's hand holdable, but takes a lot of practice to get used to. After extended use, it tends to cramp up my wrists too! The lens really wants to have a lot of light, but it's capable of really nice results. I tried calibrating the lens using the D300's auto focus fine tune feature, but it was a bit of a frustrating exercise. For a particular distance, I can fine tune the lens so the focus is bang on, but then it's off at a different distance. For example, for close in, the lens was back-focusing a fair bit (yes, the target was beyond the lens' minimum focusing distance). However, at a further distance, it was front focusing. This is using the same zoom setting - just different focusing distances. Since my main use for the lens would be for air shows for far away plane shots, I elected to adjust for that distance. This means that it will be sub-optimal for close in shots. Just have to deal with it I guess.
Nikon D300 w/ Sigma 150-500mm OS lens - Bernard Zee