Overview – Osprey and Burrowing Owls Workshop

This bird photography workshop will teach you how to be a better photographer, especially for birds. We will concentrate on just two species freeing you from constant worry about photographing every bird and allowing yourself multiple opportunities to create captivating images and learn new techniques. I think that you will find it liberating and educational. Don’t worry; there will be tons of photos taken, and you will still have to cull hundreds of rejected shots. If you pay attention and learn what I teach, you won’t have nearly as many deletes!

The species and the timing for the Ospreys and Owls workshop were not random. Osprey and Burrowing Owls should both be in various stages of creating their next brood of chicks. Both of these species require different skill sets, and I’ll teach you what you need to know. This season is a busy time for the birds, with nest building, mating, hatching, and feeding, requiring one or both adults to be more active than usual. Perfect conditions to learn and more importantly practice new things.

You’ll learn how to use bird behavior to improve the impact of your photographs.
You’ll learn to pre-visualize or perhaps re-visualize images to catch the perfect moment.
You’ll learn the best settings for action as well as portraits.
You’ll learn to choose your best shots like a professional.
You’ll learn post-processing techniques that will make your images pop.
You’ll learn about way more things than I can predict.

Highlights Owls and Osprey Workshop

  • 7 Nights and 8 Days

  • Small-Group of 4 Clients

  • Professional Instructor and Local Guide

  • 5 Boat Based Osprey Photography Sessions

  • 5 Land-based Burrowing Owl Photography Sessions

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May 5, 2021 – Day 1

Plan to arrive in time for a 5PM orientation and safety briefing.

May 6-7, 2021 – Day 2 -3

We will meet our biologist guide and leave the hotel very early to photograph the owls in sweet golden light. When the sun loses its luster or instead turns the light to un-photographable conditions, we will break for lunch. After lunch or perhaps during lunch, we will have a group download and review of the morning. We want to clear up any mistakes from the morning before heading back out for the evening.

May 7-8, 2021 Day 3-4

These two days will be similar to the previous afternoon. Breakfast, photograph, lunch, classroom, photograph, download, eat, and pass out.

May 9, 2021 Day 5

This morning will be our last time spent with the Burrowing Owls. Today you will unleash your new skills and make the best images of the trip thus far!

We will leave late morning and make the 3.5-hour drive from Cape Coral to Vero Beach and Blue Cypress Lake. We should have time to drop off bags before heading to the water and the Osprey!

May 10-11 Days 6-7

We return the brilliant blue waters of the Blue Cypress Lake to find more Osprey activity to photograph. Using the skills we have learned, we will work to get the images that you have pre-visualized.

May 12, 2021 Day 8

Today is departure day. Feel free to make whatever flight plans you like. See the travel section below.

What is Included?
  • Boat tours and admission fees
  • Some meals
  • Professional Guide and Instructors
What is Not Included?
  • Your flights and any other travel costs such as cars, hotels and travel insurance.
  • I will share all of the bird photography knowledge I’ve learned over the last 20 years. I have also been using and teaching Lightroom editing for 14 years, and I will share my workflow with you.
  • How to add impact to your images.
  • Bird photography composition guidelines and techniques
  • You will learn about planning shots, reading the light, and making the correct camera adjustments.Using previsualization and revisualization to improve your images
  • Learn how to quickly and efficiently choose your best images.
  • I will share my time-saving Lightroom workflow.
What Should I Bring?
  • You’ll need at least one SLR or mirrorless camera, ideally two to give you the opportunity to shoot with multiple lenses simultaneously, and also as a backup
  • Lenses from 300 to 600mm
  • A sturdy tripod and head mount. A gimbal head will prove useful for the Osprey as will a circular polarizer.

It’s almost impossible to list everything that you’ll need, you will be sent some recommendations and then this will be covered again before your trip on a one on one phone discussion we will have with you.

At any point feel free to reach out to either of us and we’ll talk you off of the ledge!

Airport Logistics

This workshop is a little unusual in that we are working on both coasts of Florida. The drive between destinations is about 3.5 hours.

Option 1 is to roundtrip out of Ft Myers, and you will make that long drive from Vero Beach. This should be the least expensive and simplest.

Option 2 is to arrive in Ft. Myers then depart from Orlando (MCO). Orlando is about 1.5 hours from Vero Beach. Ft Lauderdale (FLL) is a two-hour drive, in my experience with the traffic, getting there can be a nightmare.

Option 3 is to roundtrip from Orlando and drive the same 3.5 hours to Cape Coral. Now that I am reading my own thoughts, this is likely the cheapest and most accessible.

Car Rental Logistics

You will need a car for this workshop. If you are interested in carpooling, please let me know, and I will try to sort that out with other attendees. If there are no virus issues, we will be able to carpool from the hotel for each photography session.

Hotel Logistics

May 5-9, 2021
Hampton Inn & Suites – Cape Coral/Fort Myers Area, FL
619 SE 47th Terrace, Cape Coral, FL 33904

May 9-12, 2021
Best Western Plus Sebastian Hotel & Suites
1655 US-1, Sebastian, FL 32958

Click the Green Button at the Bottom the page and that will take you to my payment processor and you can choose your favorite method of payment. In the White Box you can enter the number of places that you would like to book.

About 30 days before departure, you will get a welcome kit with the nuts and bolts of what to expect. Of course, feel free to email me or call me and we can talk about it as much as you like!

There is a 2.5% convenience fee to pay your balance by credit cards. There are no fees with any of the listed payment methods for your deposit. Be sure to read the Terms and Conditions and or the FAQ to fully understand about deposits, cancellations and other important, but boring stuff.

I’ve been very passively advising my clients to purchase travel insurance for a while, but lately it seems like there have been multiple people having travel issues. Some have lost their deposits and sometimes even the cost of the entire trip!

Based on my client’s experience, I cannot stress more strongly how crucial it is to purchase travel insurance. Like I said before, and here it comes again, there is never a way to predict what is going to happen when you are booking trips months and years into the future.

You can read more about my thoughts about the importance of travel insurance in this blog post.

Or you can go get a free quote and book your vital travel insurance.

https://wildlifeworkshops.link/Travel_Insurance_Quote

About Captain Ron

Ron grew up in Wisconsin and spent countless days outdoors, where my dad taught him the appreciation of nature that he holds so dear today. Ron has undergraduate and graduate degrees in Wildlife Ecology and Biology and has worked as a professional wildlife biologist for 3 states over the past 30 years. I currently reside in Florida, where wildlife photo opportunities abound. My particular interest is birds. I love studying their behaviors and creating images with them as the subject.

Ron is a licensed and insured boat captain with over 15 years of experience.

The Osprey Boat

The boat we use is owned by our Captain and guide. The boat is a 19 foot customized 2011 Fiesta pontoon with 70 hp four-stroke Yamaha outboard. This boat is quick, quiet, and there is no annoying engine exhaust like on older boats with older two-stroke engines.

Osprey Photography Boat

Osprey Photography Boat

Osprey Photography Pontoon Boat

Osprey Photography Pontoon Boat

Custom Features
  • A tri-toon set up featuring three fiberglass pontoons instead of just two, making the boat more stable and quiet than vessels with only two aluminum pontoons.
  • Enhanced pedestal seating to maximized the room on deck and make shooting effortless.
  • GPS controlled trolling motor allowing precise boat positioning no matter the water depth and wind conditions.
  • Dual Power-Pole shallow water anchors allowing the boat to be kept at the precise angle needed for you to get the best shots possible.
  • Side-wall mounted monopod/gimbal head camera supports allow up to 4 photographers to use gimbal heads. Thus, no tripod legs cluttering up the boat deck.
  • Custom camouflage for those situations where stealth and being hidden from the birds makes all the difference in getting the birds close. Some species like swallow-tailed kites get a lot closer to a camouflaged boat.

This is probably going to be my first workshop in the Corvid era. I have decided to offer a few considerations to ease your mind about choosing to sign up for a workshop.

Deposits

The deposit is fully refundable until 75 days before the workshop.

Notifications

I rarely run a workshop that I have not experienced myself. In this case, I have visited and photographed at these locations, but I have not yet worked with Ron. I interviewed multiple vendors, but none compared to Ron. I was impressed with his photography, and so I know he will get us in his favorite spots and at the right time for great photography. Teaching is an essential element of my workshops, and I am thrilled that Rod is a wildlife biologist. Ron’s combination of science and photography convinced me he is the perfect partner for this workshop.

Registration Information

Tuition

The tuition for the Osprey and Burrowing Owls Workshop is $1995

Deposit

The deposit for this workshop is $100 USD. The deposit can be paid by PayPal, Credit Card, Wire Transfer or Check. Actually, if you have another way you would like to pay, I am open to new ideas when it comes to collecting money!

The balance of the workshop tuition will be due February 19, 2021 (75 days prior).

Ready to Go?

Here is the plan, you are going to create great images, you are going to leave a better photographer than when you arrived and we’ll have some laughs along the way! Hit the register button now!

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