Posts Tagged ‘Bull’

I tend to like poses in animals.  It combines well with the clean, graphic images that appeal to me.  However, in the past I’ve felt like I’ve ended up with too many “statue” animals rather living, breathing animals.  So, I made an effort all year to capture animals “doing something,” with a preference to an interesting behavior.   I feel like this image was the culmination that effort.

I’m also proud of overcoming a technical challenge to get this image.  The sun was behind the mountains, near sunset, and my shutter speed had dropped down to 1/40th of a second, which is very slow considering I was shooting with a 600mm lens.   I spent a lot of time over the year, my first with a 600mm, to learn how to keep the lens and camera steady and it paid off on the day I made this photo.

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The National Bison Range is ironically a difficult place to photograph bison.   The rules restrict you to the road, and near your car, while unlike Yellowstone the bison at the Range feel no great need to use the roads as trails.   In the winter months you simply do not see them, while I’ve driven full summer afternoons without spotting a single one nearer than 400 yards away.  Therefore, when I made the hour long drive yesterday I had no great hopes of photographing bison, but since the rut was on and there was a chance of late afternoon thunderstorms, conditions I like for landscapes, I went anyway.

And I was pleasantly surprised.

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Despite a forecast for rain all day, I decided to go out and photograph anyway because everything is so lush and rain only enhances the green.  It was near the end of the day, before the clouds unleashed heavy rains, when I found four bull elk sporting impressive racks along a creek.  With such thick vegetation it was difficult to catch one without a twig across their faces, but this one, curious about my intentions, eventually decided to give me an unobstructed view.

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