Lower Klamath National Wildlife Refuge December13

On Monday the extreme cold weather we have been having froze and burst one of the fire sprinkler pipes in our office flooding part of it.  So with the office closed on Tuesday December 10th I took the opportunity to and head over to one of my favorite places to photograph wildlife, the Lower Klamath National Wildlife Refuge.  It is always more fun in my opinion to photograph with friends so I called Linda Willems to go with me.  Plus she could drive so I could take more pictures ;P  Actually I did offer to drive several times so she could concentrate on photographing, but she has seen me drive so she declined! J/K

 

Love this shot of this red tail hawk passing in front of Mt. McLoughlin.

ISO 250, 300mm, f/5.6, 1/1250sec

Now unfortunately I don’t know what type of hawk this is….so if anyone knows please let me know in the comments.

ISO 400, 300mm, f/6.3, 1/1600sec

ISO 400, 300mm, f/6.3, 1/1600sec

There were plenty of golden and bald eagles to photograph on Tuesday, but unfortunately the sun was behind the raptors from the direction you photograph.  This made it difficult to get detail in the shots.  My next trip over will be in the early morning so the sun will be on the other side of the trees where they roost.  This will result in direct light on the birds and not side or backlighting.

ISO 200, 300mm, f/5.6, 1/2000sec

ISO 200, 300mm, f/5.6, 1/1250sec

We, Linda and I, were hoping to see more pheasants on this shoot.  The male ring-necked pheasant’s coloring against the snow is beautiful.

ISO 250, 300mm, f/5.6, 1/1600sec

ISO 250, 300mm, f/5.6, 1/1600sec

Once they are in flight they are really difficult to photograph since they fly so low and fast!  It was just by luck I captured these two shots.

One of the other animals that is fun to photograph at the refuge is the coyotes.  We were lucky to see two on this trip.  Unfortunately they are shy and are usually a long distance away.  Because of this a Nikon 500mm f/4.0G is on my wish list!  So if anyone has 9 grand I can have let me know 🙂

ISO 400, 300mm, f/5.6, 1/2000sec

ISO 400, 300mm, f/5.6, 1/1600sec

If you drive slowly and don’t stop you can get right up next to some of these birds.  As we drove up to this one he turned and said, “yes, may I help you humans?”

ISO 400, 300mm, f/6.3, 1/1000sec

After taking his portrait a few times he was getting comfortable like you want all of your subjects to be….usually.  We on the other hand wanted him to then take off.  So Linda honked the horn and scared the heck out of him!

ISO 400, 300mm, f/6.3, 1/1000sec

I thought he was going to fall off the post, fortunately he didn’t!  I also thought for sure he would then fly off, but instead he looked back at us and gave us the “evil” eye.

ISO 400, 300mm, f/6.3, 1/1250sec

I’ve never caught one blinking before and it was awesome to catch!!  When I showed this series of pictures to Taunya and Tyler they said they were going to call PETA and have me arrested for cruelty to animals 🙂

ISO 250, 300mm, f/5.6, 1/1250sec

Well, obviously I took a ton of photographs and of the ones I thought were good enough to share came to 77…So if you are so inclined the rest of the photographs are below in the gallery.  Please enjoy and as always critiques and comments are welcome.

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