EF 600mm f/4 IS II
During the course of the shoot, I had some unique opportunities to photograph interaction between adult and juvenile kites. The interaction frames are always more difficult compared to shooting a single bird and require rapid response from both the photographer as well as the gear to capture the peak of action and of course with all subjects in sharp focus. The EF 600mm f/4L IS II performed very well here holding the focus where the sensor was placed despite erratic and sudden maneuvers by the raptors. Here are a few examples:
At times three juvenile kites shared the same perch, which of course lead to quick confrontation.
I also had a few opportunities for some close-up flight shots. Given the limited DOF at 840mm focal length and when the bird is large in the frame, it is essential to have the focus plane exactly on the head, which in turn requires rapid servo response or the critical focus will fall on the belly/talon area leaving the head soft. The EF 600mm f/4L IS II performed well with the EF 1.4X Extender III holding focus on the head as the bird flew towards the camera. Of course in these conditions photographer needs to handhold and track the bird with great control and precision, and in this respect the new lens helps with its great weight distribution.