Tuatara photos

I’ve just added some new tuatara photos to the gallery (check out the recent uploads section to see what else is new). Tuatara are mostly nocturnal, so most of my photos of them have been taken at night with with the use of flash. They do sometimes emerge from their burrows to bask during the day though, and this is what the tuatara in these latest photos was doing. Basking like this it presented an opportunity to photograph with natural light, but not much of it. Light levels at the forest floor can be a tiny fraction of what falls on the canopy. Our eyes and brain automatically adjust to compensate and we don’t notice it so much. Not so with a camera. The good thing about tuatara in these situations is that they often stay incredibly still, and with a good tripod and technique it is possible to make perfectly sharp photos at surprisingly slow shutter speeds. Not many wildlife subjects allow you to make sharp photos at one fifth of a second!

Tuatara are largely nocturnal but will sometimes emerge from their burrows to bask, giving a opportunity to photograph under natural light. Taken with a Canon 1D Mark IV, EF300mm f/2.8L IS USM +1.4x, 1/5 s at f8, ISO 400.