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Thread: Orlando in March

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    BPN Member Barry Ekstrand's Avatar
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    Default Orlando in March

    Similar to another post, I'm also coming to Orlando but earlier - the week of March 11. I'll probably get 1 day to visit a birding site - is the best option Gatorland or somewhere else? My brother-in-law lives on Merritt Island so that could work also, but I want to take the best shot (no pun intended) for birds coming from Orlando that week. Any thoughts are appreciated.

    Barry

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    Life Time Member Marina Scarr's Avatar
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    Are you more interested in birds or bird photography? How badly do you want nesting birds verses non-nesting birds? Do you have any tarket birds?
    Marina Scarr
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    BPN Member Barry Ekstrand's Avatar
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    Marina,

    Bird photography is the objective. I get alot of egrets, herons, and ibises here in the Houston area so different species would be nice. I would love to get eagles if possible. My lens is the Canon 400mm f5.6 and I also have the Canon EX 1.4 III TC. Thanks for your help!

    Barry

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    There's always something at Merritt Island but it can be slim pickings. 3 hours south, Wakodahatchee is great right now. If that's not in the cards, I vote for Gatorland. I haven't been there this season but going next Sunday.

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    Life Time Member Marina Scarr's Avatar
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    I would go to Gatorland which is quite busy and they have early open and late close just for photographers Thursday through Sunday. I think you might also enjoy Circle B Bar Reserve in Lakeland which isn't too far from there. As Mike mentioned, Merritt isn't too good right now...although sometimes it can change very quickly. You would also enjoy a day at Fort Desoto Park on North Beach.
    Marina Scarr
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    BPN Member Robert vanMierop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marina Scarr View Post
    ...I would go to Gatorland which is quite busy and they have early open and late close just for photographers Thursday through Sunday...
    I'd agree. Gatorland is very photographer friendly these days with early entry, or late stay, or both. The nesting, breeding, etc. started earlier than usual this year and there is a lot of activity and variety. If you're only down here for a limited time that's your best bet. 400mm, esp. with a 1.4 is a big gun for Gatorland. Some of the nests will be less than 20 feet away. I was there a few days ago and wished I had my 70-200...really. Have fun!

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    Life Time Member Marina Scarr's Avatar
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    Forgot to mention that it's usually helpful to bring an extension tube with you b/c witih a 400mm there may be times you are much too close to photograph with a tube.
    Marina Scarr
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    Moderator, Digital Workflow Don Lacy's Avatar
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    Gatorland is s great choice and if you have the time drive across the state and go to Ft desoto even when its slow I have been able to come away with nice images.
    Don Lacy
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    I haven't been to Orlando Wetlands this year, but it's fairly close to Merritt Island and has produced in the past. Viera Wetlands might be another option.

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    BPN Member Barry Ekstrand's Avatar
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    Thanks to everyone for the great input, it is very much appreciated. I have never used an extension tube with a long lens, I think I'll just make sure to bring my Canon 24-105 f4L and Tamron 70-300 just in case. Thanks again!

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