A grey American Red Squirrel.

I was set up in the yard using my ground pod last weekend. One of the species I photographed was an American Red Squirrel. I did notice the colour of the individual when taking the shots, I’m usually to busy checking focus and framing to study the subject in detail. However, when editing the shots I noticed how grey the Squirrel was.

A couple of weeks ago we had young American Red Squirrels around, they were quite small and a distinctive grey colour. I suspect that this is one of them, grown a bit and starting to get some red colouring.

Juvenile American Red Squirrel.

Eye level with a Chipmunk.

A shot from a recent session in the yard using my ground pod to get down to eye level with the birds and mammals.

This Eastern Chipmunk was interested in the human lying in the grass while it searched for a few more seeds to stuff in its cheek pouches.

An Eastern Chipmunk with stuffed cheeks.

A portrait of a Mourning Dove.

A Mourning Dove feeding in the grass.

One of the first photos from last Sunday morning. Taken before I raised my ground pod a couple of inches. I also moved back a bit once I realised how tight in the frame the birds, squirrels and chipmunks were going to be.

Portrait of a Mourning Dove.

A juvenile Pine Siskin.

Sunday morning saw me lying in the yard behind the camera. I had set up my ground pod to try for some shots of the Squirrels, Chipmunks and whatever bird species decided to feed on the ground. I was expecting Common Grackles, Blue Jays and other larger species. I wanted to get as close as possible to eye level with the subjects.

A few weeks ago I got a low profile ball head for the ground pod. It would allow the lens to be about 3/4 inch lower than the ball head I had been using. Coupled with a couple of other changes I could now get the lens more than an inch lower to the ground.

So my initial set up was as low to the ground as possible. I then remembered a lesson learned in the 1980s. You can get to low, it’s hard to see through the viewfinder and you can’t see smaller species for vegetation sometimes.

So I swapped the 3/4 inch bolts that act as legs on the ground pod for the 3 inch bolts. This allowed me to see the juvenile Pine Siskin as it fed in the grass.

Pine Siskin juvenile.

“Wot you lookin’ at?”

An Eastern Chipmunk checking what the photographer is up to.

I was using my ground pod to get as low to the ground and as close as possible to eye level with the birds, squirrels and chipmunks in the yard. As a result, the Chipmunk would occasionally stand up on its hind legs to get a better view of me. For some reason, in my mind it’s got a belligerent Cockney accent.

Checking out the photographer.