Bird Photography – How Big Was That Bird?

I’ve receive quite a bit of email regarding my recent post showing some close-up images of Turkey Vultures. The birds look very (VERY) large in my images and several readers have wondered just how large these birds really are. They say “Everything is Bigger in Texas” and I can tell you this, when it comes to the Turkey Vulture they’re not exaggerating one bit.

I captured this turkey vulture soaring right over my head and it more than filled my viewfinder. The turkey vulture in the second image was just beginning a dive toward the trees when I took this photograph.

Texas Turkey Vulture Soaring

Texas Turkey Vulture Soaring
Copyright © 2008 Jeff Lynch Photography
Shot taken with a Canon 40D hand held, EF 300mm f/4L IS USM with a 1.4X extender at 420mm, f/5.6 for 1/350th of a second at ISO 100 on SanDisk digital film. All post capture processing was done in Lightroom 2 and Noise Ninja. Click on the image above for a larger version.

Texas Turkey Vulture Diving

Texas Turkey Vulture Diving
Copyright © 2008 Jeff Lynch Photography
Shot taken with a Canon 40D hand held, EF 300mm f/4L IS USM with a 1.4X extender at 420mm, f/6.7 for 1/500th of a second at ISO 100 on SanDisk digital film. All post capture processing was done in Lightroom 2 and Noise Ninja. Click on the image above for a larger version.

And if these two images aren’t enough to give you an idea of just how large these incredible scavengers are, take a look at this image showing just the Turkey Vulture’s wing. My best estimate from this image is that the Texas Turkey Vulture in question had a wingspan of over six feet!

wing_blog

Texas Turkey Vulture Wing
Copyright © 2008 Jeff Lynch Photography
Shot taken with a Canon 40D hand held, EF 300mm f/4L IS USM with a 1.4X extender at 420mm, f/5.6 for 1/350th of a second at ISO 100 on SanDisk digital film. All post capture processing was done in Lightroom 2 and Noise Ninja. Click on the image above for a larger version.

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