May 26th started out with snow in the morning and the animals sporting their new looks.
Bighorns making their way down the mountain.
Beyond those photos action was pretty slow for us this morning with a lot of landscape photos taken to fill time.
Early afternoon we stopped at a small pond by Boulder pullout to photograph a small herd of bison. Things had been slow so now was out time for some bison and calf photos. After setting up the tripod and firing off two photos...
1) bison calves
2) Little bird (Finch? Sparrow? Maybe someone can educate me.)
A commotion got the bison stirred up. Looking up from the bird I see a black wolf charging up over the hill and into the bison herd in a attempt to get a calf.
One wolf was not much of a match for the bison and everyone escaped safely. The wolf, a female from the Mollie pack, meandered around, slowly following the herd of bison ever so nonchalantly.
The wolf worked her way down the valley eventually disappearing from view with no more chasing in view.
Out for turkeys but they had other plans. Did not hear or see a turkey. After a few hours I turned to a location where I knew Bluebirds would be at.
Thanks for looking. Feel free to share.
Back to the creek once again before dawn. Different day, same story. Birds flew off the roost and up onto the power line. Packed up and headed to the other side... again. This time, different story.
Looking out onto the power line the birds were out in the center of it about a few hundred yards away. The right-of-way is rolling hills so it was fairly easy to get to the other side walking up through one of the gullies. The birds, approximately 30 with 3 longbeards, appeared to be working their way towards me so I set up and waited.
Over the next hour the birds kept getting closer to my location with a pair of longbeards strutting together almost the entire time.
The third longbeard kept himself separate from the pair and came in pretty close, before all the other birds. Luckily, he proceeded to put on a show.
The strutting pair closed their distance but really good photo opportunities were limited by branches and differences in elevation.
The turkeys entered into the woods and out of site. I circled around to try and get in front of them again but there were not to be seen again this morning.
While waiting for the turkeys back in the woods a pair of Red-bellied Woodpeckers worked some dead trees in the area.
That was it for the day.
Enjoy and feel free to share!
March 10, 2012
Arrived in the creek bottom just as it was breaking dawn, hoping to catch the turkeys coming off roost again this weekend for photos. Half the battle was complete, the birds were visible up on roost. Now, time to wait for the other half and get them on the ground and in camera range. Birds started pitching down out of the trees and onto the hill across the creek. One after another they flew down and then proceeded up the hill to a power line right-of-way on the other side. It became apparent pretty quick that I was not going to have a morning like I did last weekend.
After sitting for a little a lone gobble could be heard up the creek bottom and it was getting closer. Finally, a lone Jake was coming towards my set up, resulting in a couple photos and allow me to say I was not skunked this day.
I packed up and headed to the other side hoping to intercept the turkeys.
On the other side of the creek there is a small grassy area and the Bluebirds were out.
For photos, nothing else was to be had.
Enjoy & feel free to share!
For the past 5 weeks I have been trying to get good turkey photos. Past attempts did not work out well. Either no or very limited opportunities. Finding the birds on the roost was not a problem. Getting pictures after they flew down was a problem. Last Sunday the birds flew off roost, down the hill across a creek and onto the creek bottom. Getting to the other side required going back to the truck and driving around to the other side. Walking in I jumped a few deer. Joining me this morning is another photographer friend, Rick. We got set up by some trees and Rick starting working his turkey calls. After close to an hour with very little photo opportunities, except for a squirrel, we picked up and moved to a location in front of us.
We had seen turkeys in this area but they were too far out or behind brush. No sooner had we set down that Rick saw turkeys out ahead of us. Over the next 10-15 minutes we had 24+ jakes (immature gobblers) parade by us at 30yds or under.
Once past us we did not hear or see another turkey that morning. (Feb 26, 2012)
This past Sunday (March 4, 2012) found Rick and I back out for another opportunity at turkey photos. This time we went directly to the creek bottom where we watched the birds fly down too. Rick brought a blind along. With very little effort, the blind was set up and we were sitting pretty inside waiting for the action to start up. During this whole process, the gobblers made their presence on roost known as they gobbled at passing geese. As daylight increased, we could see the birds up in the trees across the creeks getting ready to fly down and hit the ground. Once the fly down occurred, it seemed like dive bombers were headed our way as the birds glided down and landed 50yds ahead of us. For the next 90 minutes we had birds strutting, gobbling, fighting and giving us opportunity after opportunity for photos and video. Just about all the birds were Jakes again. We saw one mature gobbler but could not get any photos.
And a bunch of video
(Group gobble at 20 seconds)
(Group gobble at 10 seconds)
Feel free to share.