The swallowtail photo was taken at a nearby butterfly house. Because of limited depth of field when trying to get a good close up image, it is sometimes better to shoot when the wings are fully open so that the entire butterfly is the same distance from the lens, such as I did here. This increases your chance of getting all parts of the butterfly in focus.
This shot was taken with available light at ISO800, 1/250th second and F8. It was hand held. The 70-300mm zoom was at 160mm (on my Olympus with 2x crop factor that equates to a 320mm field of view). Because of image stabilization built into the body of the Olympus, all lenses are automatically image stabilized. So, likely I could have taken this shot at a slower speed (such as 1/125th at ISO400) because the swallowtail seems to be motionless; but I usually shoot butterflies by setting the shutter and aperature manually at 1/250th and F8. This freezes subject movement and gives very good depth of field. To ensure a reasonable exposure, I then set ISO to automatic.
This Great Blue Heron photo was taken in a pond near my place of work. Though I have seen herons there for years, this was the first time I was even aware that there were fish in this shallow pond. Same 70-300mm zoom as above, but at full zoom-in of 300mm (600mm effective field of view). Shutter priority at 1/250th second was enough to freeze action and didn't strain the effectiveness of the camera image stabilization system. ISO was 800 and aperature was F6.7. I like how sharp his eye is.
Heron with Prey
Taken on the coast of Maine, on Penobscott Bay. I liked the warm diffused light of this 7pm shot.