Thursday, October 29, 2015

The Bear Facts

Brown bear are beautiful and amazing creatures. They look relatively benign, and appear playful and amusing. But in fact they are skillful hunters, and at all times when photographing them it is important to afford them the highest level of respect. In other words, keep your distance.

When photographing coastal bears, as distinguished from mountain bears who are less mellow, as long as you give them plenty of space AND providing there are plenty of salmon and clams for them to catch easily, they barely seem to care that there are humans close by. The sound of cameras going off does not bother them. The sound of ATVs motoring around does not bother them.

However, they are wary and will change their desired route if people or vehicles block their way. So it is vitally important to keep an eye on the direction they want to head and to clear a path for them.

At all times in this environment we travel with an experienced naturalist who is knowledgeable about bear behavior. Make no mistake that a cute cuddly bear is tame and will tolerate any interference. It is neither tame nor tolerant, and should always be given a wide berth.

Shutter Speed 1/1000 sec.  Aperture f/6.3.  ISO 800.  Lens: Canon 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II, set at 140mm.  Camera: Canon 7D Mark II.  Gitzo tripod with Really Right Stuff ballhead and Wimberley Sidekick.

TODAY'S QUOTE: "Our task must be to free ourselves by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty."  -Albert Einstein

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