Watch this movie to learn more about us birders...

About Me, my gear, and this website

I have enjoyed birdwatching, and photography for more than 25 years. Today I most often combine the two interests into bird photography. I created this site as an aid to bird identification, and to share information on this great hobby.

My photo gear today (June  2015):
Canon 7D MII + Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM + Canon Extender 1.4x III. For family and fun I use the STM lenses Canon EF-S 18-135 F/3.5-5.6 IS STM, Canon EF-S 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM, and Canon EF 50 f/1.8 IS STM. I also use a Canon 580EX II. 

I got tired of the noise in the 7D (sold it), and was considering a Canon 6D. But the lack of highspeed shooting and no crop factor (in house focal length multiplier) made it less interesting. I got the Canon 70D as it is affordable to me, and my 7D had had its run...The 7D Mark II is my current camera. I use a Sandisk Secure Digital 128GB Extreme UHS-1 SDXC 80MB/s Class 10. 

My first digital SLR camera gear was a Canon 20D and a 400mm f/5.6 L USM which was a perfect lens for its fast autofocus and sharp images. The light weight and comfortable handling made it my favourite for a long time. But I sold it to buy a 300mm f/4.0 L IS USM. This because I sometimes needed IS, a shorter focal length, or needed to get closer to the subjects. But I found the 300mm + 1.4x Extender to be tedious with the on-off again with the Extender.

I then bought a very good Canon 500mm f/4.0 L IS USM, but the weight and bulkiness got tiresome. I also tried a Canon EF 400mm f/4.0 DO IS USM + Converter, but I wasn't happy with the results when the converter was connected (too soft). It was also noticably heavier than the other lenses (except the 500mm). I then fell in love with the versatile Canon 100-400mm lens. But true to my curious nature I switched to the new Tamron SP 150-600mm F/5-6.3 which gives you amazing pictures when the autofocus lock on. 

It is both weight and cost that prohibits me from going with the new versions of the BIG Canon lenses; 300mm f/2.8 + 2x extender, the 500mm, 600mm and 200-400/1.4x built in Extender lens.

Sound recordings were made with the Røde VideoMic + Dead Cat Wind Muff and Olympus VN-4100PC or directly into the old 7D. There is now an even smaller video mic from Røde, and it is tailored for DSLR's such as the 7D/70D series. In the future I hope to find a nice mic for my phone instead (I rarely use an external mic).

For support I have since March 2011 been using BlackRapid's RS-7 on the telephote lens at all times. I have a BushHawk shoulder stock with remote release but haven't been using it much lately. The manufacturer seized to exist so it is very difficult to get spare cables and other parts. I used to have a Benro C-257 tripod with a Manfrotto 701RC2 Fluid Video Head. I also have a Velbon CF-7 monopod that I rarely use.

I use a Laptop and a 1 TB, WD Passport, external HDD with USB 3.0 to offload the cards when in the field. I always carry a backup battery. Lens cloth, Lens cleaning paper is also in the bag.

For travel I put my gear in a Lowepro backpack. For airtravel I put it in an aircraft carry-on with wheels.

At home I use a laptop computer with Windows 8.1. I import the pictures, prefix and sort them with the date of capture using adobe Bridge which is included in Adobe Photoshop CC. I use Bridge for final inspection and try to delete as much as I dare. I also use it to open the best ones in PS CC for editing. Annually I export all pictures from previous year to a 2TB external Western Digital HD.

My birding gear today (July 2015):
I have had many binoculars in my day. But I still love my old Leitz Trinovid 8x40 B and have no other.

I use the tiny Opticron Mighty Midget Travelscope. I use the 40862M HDF T eyepiece with the MM2 V2 ED which gives me a 12-36x magnification. It is a great little scope for us who already carry a lot of gear in form of photographic equipment.

The website:
The site was designed for IE and Netscape on a Windows OS. But today I mainly maintain the support for IE, Chrome, and Safari. It is optimized for a screen resolution of 1920 by 1200 pixels, though I still keep the width at 1000 pixels. I have tried to keep it up to date on mobile devices as well.

The design had influences from many sites though just about every site in 2004 seemed to have the grey theme. But I also used a lot of input from my past work site which had the same top navigation and search box location.

It was hand coded in html, and makes extensive use of CSS. I also use an html editor to speed up editing, checking links, and for making sweeping changes across all pages before the annual re-publishing of the entire site.

I have used four different hosting services. I now use (325 SEK/year including one domain name). But for the last year they have not been as good as before with occasional long delays in publishing changes from Dreamweaver FTP uploads. You cannot trust that the changes are really online. Maybe time to move once again...

Best Regards,
Martin Lofgren


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