Wildlife photography is my passion. I get so caught up in the moment of seeing an amazing animal and capturing at least just one amazing photo. It is what I love, live and dream about. That perfect shot!
I got the opportunity to mark off another amazing item from my bucket list this week. Photographing a black bear. Here in Arkansas you might see a bear, but seeing one is rare and very exciting if given the opportunity.
Arkansas, once know as the bear state, is loved by black bear due to its mountains which are rugged terrain, covered in trees, and abundant with water sources. Black bear were almost extinct in the natural state in the 1930’s with only 50 bear. Now, there are thousands and the numbers keep climbing.
I recently got the opportunity to capture some amazing shots of this young male black bear. This is a young bear recently pushed away by it’s mother just looking for food. He was very brave and didn’t seem to mind posing for me.
I hope you enjoyed the shots of this beautiful little male bear. If you would like to learn more about Black Bear in Arkansas, this article from Only In Arkansas called Bears in Arkansas is an interesting read and gives some great links to read more about Arkansas Black Bears.
The weather here in Arkansas has been quite cooler in the last few weeks due to overcast rainy skies. It has been great weather to take long walks and just get out and enjoy the great outdoors with my camera in tow. During my long afternoon walks a big white bodied winged bird has caught my eye lately soaring over the pastures and ponds.
This snowy white bird know as the Great Egret, is the symbol of the National Audubon Society. I hope you enjoy these few photos that I was able to capture and just had to share.
I watched as three glided in on snowy white wings, landing in a big tree nearby. The birds put on a show landing and leaving the tree to go to the pond nearby. There were three, two adults and a juvenile. I watched as they landed in the tree and then flew to the pond feeding on fish, frogs, and anything else that they could catch.
The Great Egret is common in south Arkansas and may be seen in northern parts of Arkansas during the late summer before heading to their wintering grounds.
Nearly hunted to extinction in the late nineteenth century for their beautiful white feathers for ladies hats, they are now making a come back. Audubon was founded for protecting birds from being killed for their feathers.
This juvenile Little Blue Heron was flying low over the pond searching for a place to land to get its next meal. This is a smaller bird and will change color when it is mature.
I was spotted by the birds before I could get good photos while they were in the pond feeding. So maybe next time…
If you would like to know more about the Great Egret visit the National Audubon Society Also All About Birds is another great site to read about the Great Egret.
Shooting action shots of an animal on the water is really exciting and can be a challenge in itself. Bringing together light, water and action, can create an awesome effect in photography. This series of shots of the Trumpeter Swans, right when the golden hour in photography was ending, was such a gift. It happened at the most perfect time of day, with the most perfect subject any photographer could want, the Trumpeter Swan.
Each afternoon the swans always made an afternoon flight before nightfall. I was setting and waiting for this to take place for hours and was just about to give up. Since it was almost dark, I didn’t think the swans would fly. I was beginning to believe that they had not intention of flying that afternoon. Suddenly they were spooked by something and the bobbing of heads began. The nervous swans gave me an indication that flight could take place any minute. That is when something magical happened. That is when light, water, and action came together.
The loveliest thing about shooting around water is that every time you shoot, something special and magical has a big chance of happening. In this case it was all dependent on the moving of the water, the light and shutter speed. Shutter speed is so important when you are trying to capture a moving target. Shutter speed refers to the length of time your camera shutter is open allowing light to enter. The faster the shutter speed the less time the sensor is exposed to light. This gives you different effects at different speeds.
The swans splashed on top of the water as they made their way across the pond. Light hitting the water droplets shown like diamonds around the swans. This gave my images a surreal look that captured the Trumpeter Swans in a dreamlike illusion. I hope you enjoy photography magic……..