Tag Archives: Wildlife Photography

Bringing The Outside In

How I Photograph Wildlife and Nature by Leonard Lee Rue III. America's Most Published Photographer Naturalist Shares The Secrets That Lead To Superior Photographs

In The Hushed Silence of Winter Storm

 

A Young Mule Deer Buck With Fresh Snow On His Back, Patiently Waits Out A Fast Moving Storm In The Colorado Rockies. Photograph By Michael Patrick McCarty
Laying Low and Hanging Out.

 

A Small Flock Of Canada Geese Walks Through A Field Of Snow And Grass, Searching For Food In A Rocky Mountain Winter Storm. Photo by Michael Patrick McCarty
It’s a lean, Yearning, Time of Year

 

A Trophy Mule Deer Buck On High Alert While Quietly Feeding During A Colorado Winter Snowstorm. Photograph By Michael Patrick McCarty
Hard to Hide Those Antlers

 

A small Herd of Cow Elk Weave In And Out of the Falling Snow During a November Storm in the Rocky Mountains. Photograph  by Michael Patrick McCarty
Out of the Storm

 

Michael Patrick McCarty

 

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Silence & Solitude: Yellowstone’s Winter Wilderness (Hardcover)

Powerful, brutal, beautiful, and at times, enchanting, winter in Yellowstone National Park is a world unlike any other. It is a season both abstract and profound, where super-heated water erupts into arctic air, where wildlife pushes snow in a constant struggle to survive, and where silence and solitude dominate the park’s deep wilderness. Photographer Tom Murphy has experienced Yellowstone’s winter wilderness as few others have, skiing far into the backcountry with heavy camera gear, an uncanny ability to weather cold and snow, and an artist’s eye for the sublime. His photographs reveal a majestic land where the air is clean and clear and where a wolf’s throaty howl carries for miles on a still day.

“Silence & Solitude: Yellowstone’s Winter Wilderness” shows us the splendor and force of Yellowstone’s long cold. In 130 photos we begin to understand the lives of the wildlife that must endure it; we begin to feel the inspiring power of a landscape still wild and pure; and we see nature’s beauty in things great and small. These photos are accompanied by Murphy’s thoughtful words that take us into the time and place of each image. The captions allow us to smile at a fox’s serious hunt for a mouse, to understand why bison stand stoically in geothermal steam, and to marvel at a sudden shift of subtle light that brings breathtaking grandeur to a nondescript little tree and just as suddenly takes it away.

As popular author Tim Cahill observes in his foreword, “These are photos that mirror a man’s passion, and I know of nothing like them anywhere. Murphy’s photographs are not simply stunning or striking: they are also knowledgeable and even wise.”


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An Elk of Snow, and Spirit

Into The Storm

 

A photograph of a larger than life-sized bronze sculpture of a trophy bull elk, taken in a winter snow storm near Carbondale, Colorado
A Bull of the Night…And Dreams

 

It has often been said that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and I may add that we never know when it may grace us with an unexpected visit.

I found my latest blessing in the form of a larger than life-sized bronze sculpture of a bull elk, found near Carbondale, Colorado, artist unknown.

You?

Photograph by Michael Patrick McCarty, Active Member Outdoor Writers Association of America

Contemporary Wildlife Art (Hardcover)

Over 360 spectacular art pieces are accompanied by personal statements from 74 artists in this curated selection of contemporary works. The artists, who come from across the United States, and from places such as New Zealand, Australia, and the United Kingdom, all convey their respect, enthusiasm, and personal connections to wildlife. A wide range of styles and media is covered including photography, glass, relief woodcarving, mosaics, pastels, oil, watercolor and acrylic painting, bronzes, stoneware, terracotta and porcelains, ink, graphite and colored pencil, digital illustration, felted sculpture and fabric collage, and more. Examples of wildlife presented are bears, birds, elephants, monkeys, pandas, tigers, foxes, wolves, owls, seals, and even insects. This book is a great gift for wildlife and nature enthusiasts, interior designers, museums, art collectors, art educators, and artists.

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A Mountain Goat Morning of Incomparable Beauty

Mountain Goats: Ecology, Behavior, and Conservation of an Alpine Ungulate (Paperback)

Mountain goats have been among the least studied of North American ungulates, leaving wildlife managers with little information on which to base harvest strategies or conservation plans.
 
This book offers the first comprehensive assessment of the ecology and behavior of mountain goats, setting forth the results of a remarkable 16-year longitudinal study of more than 300 marked individuals in a population in Alberta, Canada. The authors’ thorough, long-term study allowed them to draw important conclusions about mountain goat ecology—including individual reproductive strategies, population dynamics, and sensitivity to human disturbance—and to use those conclusions in offering guidance for developing effective conservation strategies.

Chapters examine:
-habitat use, vegetation quality, and seasonal movements
-sexual segregation and social organization
-individual variability in yearly and lifetime reproductive success of females
-age- and sex-specific survival and dispersal
-reproductive strategies and population dynamics
-management and conservation of mountain goats

The book also draws on the rich literature on long-term monitoring of marked ungulates to explore similarities and differences between mountain goats and other species,  particularly bighorn sheep and ibex.
 
By monitoring a marked population over a long period of time, researchers were able to document changes in sex-age structure and identify factors driving population dynamics. Because it explores the links between individual life-history strategy and population dynamics in a natural setting, Mountain Goats will be an invaluable resource for wildlife managers, researchers in ecology and animal behavior, conservationists, population biologists, and anyone concerned with the ecology and management of natural populations, especially in alpine environments.

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A Fine Way To Start the Day

 

A Mountain Goat comes to say hello on a fine summer morning, somewhere in the Madison Range of Southwestern Montana.

 

A Rocky Mountain Goat Grazes Peacefully On A Steep, Rocky slope, Somewhere in The Madison Range Of Southwestern Montana. Posted by Michael Patrick McCarty
Home Is Where The Mountains Are

 

A Rocky Mountain Goat, Climbing Down A Steep Rock Face To Reach His Bedding Place. Photograph Taken In The Madison Range of Southwestern Montana. Posted by Michael Patrick McCarty
Wandering Down To A Most Comfortable Bed!

 

A Rocky Mountain Goat Looks Back At The Photographer, While Out On A Morning Mountain Stroll Somewhere In The Madison Range in Southwestern Montana
Catch Me If You Can

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“You’ll know you’re in goat country when it takes both arms and both legs to climb and you can spit down on sheep”.

Patrick Stephens, “A Rocky Mountain High”, Game country, 1990 

Mule Deer Under Mother Mountain

Nikon D3400 w/ AF-P DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR (Black) (Electronics)

Before the Nikon D3400 Digital SLR Camera with 18-55mm Lens (Black), you chose your smartphone camera for convenience. Zooming was clumsy. Shooting in low light was nearly impossible. Capturing fast action was a game of luck. But after the D3400, you’ll see that you were compromising image quality. That some of the greatest photos happen when the light is low. That fast action can be frozen in perfect clarity. And that a camera and a smartphone can work together in harmony to make the photos you share absolutely amazing.FEATURES:Stunning simplicity – Photos and videos captured with the D3400 and a superb NIKKOR lens are as vibrant and lifelike as the moments they preserve. Shoot in extremely low light without a problem. Freeze fast-action in its tracks. Create portraits with rich, natural skin tones and beautifully blurred backgrounds. The photos you share will amaze everyone—even yourself.Camera, smartphone and cloud in perfect harmony – SnapBridge has changed the way cameras and smartphones work together—and only Nikon has it. Take a picture with the D3400 and it’s automatically transferred to your compatible smartphone or tablet, ready to share. SnapBridge works seamlessly with NIKON IMAGE SPACE, a cloud storage and sharing site, to back-up your photos and to help you create and share albums with your friends and family. The future of photo sharing is here.A camera designed for you – Compact and lightweight, the D3400 is designed to go everywhere you go. Even first-time DLSR owners will quickly feel at home—the camera’s controls are smartly laid out for comfort and intuitive control. The bright optical viewfinder provides a sharp, glare-free view of the world, and the comfortable grip enables precise handling.The gateway to better photography – The D3400 makes photography easy and fun, freeing you to focus on your natural talents—framing great shots, anticipating special moments and finding unique perspectives in everyday scenes. As your

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A Mule Deer Buck Stands Under Mount Sopris, Located In The Elk Mountains Range In The Maroon Bells-Snowmass Wilderness Near Carbondale, Colorado
Mule Deer In The Heart Of The Mother. Photograph By David Massender

 

Only The Mother Knows…

 

The Ute Indians called her “Mother Mountain”, because of her twin summits; the Roaring Fork Valley’s early settlers knew it as “Wemagooah Kazuhchich,” or “Ancient Mountain Heart Sits There.”

No matter what name you use, Mount Sopris, located in the Elk Mountains Range near Carbondale, Colorado provides one of the prettiest vistas in the rocky mountains.

Without a doubt, her heart beats strong. The Mule Deer feel it too.

And maybe it’s just me, but it’s even prettier when Mule Deer are standing below, and upon it.

Just saying…

 

A Small Herd of Mule Deer Graze For Their Nightly Meal Under The Protective Gaze Of Mount Sopris, Near Carbondale, Colorado
A Fine Place To Dine. Photograph by David Massender

 

And I can’t think of a more spectacular place to hunt! I plan on doing just that, very soon.

Good Hunting…

Posted By Michael Patrick McCarty

Photographs Courtesy Of David Massender

 

A Small Group Of Mule Deer Enjoy The Fall Colors Under Mount Sopris (Mother Mountain), Located In Pitkin County Near Carbondale, Colorado
Living Is Easy Before The Snow Flies. Photograph By David Massender

 

You Can Read More About Mount Sopris Here

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A Partying Party Of Pronghorns

August 2018

 

Pronghorn can provide an almost endless parade of entertainment for the perpetual watcher of wildlife, and I am always a most captive audience.

The most common sighting of an antelope for most people is that of an animal running away at an almost unbelievable speed, or perhaps just a view of their ears and head as they watch you from a long, long distance, before turning to leave.

Setting up in a blind near a water hole is a sure way to gain some close encounters of an animal not so easily observed. With luck you’ve already put in some blind time yourself, and if not, I hope that you will get to do so soon. You will not be disappointed.

With that in mind, here are just a few images from my August bowhunting adventure in Northern Colorado.

And yes, I did get my buck…but that, is another story!

 

A Pronghorn Antelope Doe Stares Head On At Close Range. Photograph by Michael Patrick McCarty, Taken On a Bowhunting Trip In The Red Desert In Northern Colorado
Ready To Shake Hands

 

Several Doe Pronghorn Antelope Watch The Horizon For Possible Danger In The Red Desert of Northwestern Colorado. Photograph By Michael Patrick McCarty
Where The Antelope And The Antelope Roam…
A Pronghorn Antelope Buck Leads The Way to Water For Two Young Ones On The Red Desert Of Northern Colorado. Photograph by Michael McCarty
Follow The Leader

 

Two Pronghorn Antelope Bucks Running Towards A Waterhole In The Red Desert of Northern Colorado. Photograph By Michael McCarty
Heading For Water

 

A Doe And Fawn Pronghorn Antelope Visit A Waterhole For An Early Morning Drink In The Red Desert of Colorado. Photograph By Michael McCarty
There’s Nothing Better Than A Cool, Early Morning Drink!

 

The Pronghorn (Antilocapra americana) One of The West's Most Iconic Animals. Photography by Michael Patrick McCarty
Poetry, And Perpetual Speed, When Needed

 

Two Doe Pronghorn Antelope Stand At Alert, On The Red Desert of Northern Colorado. Photography by Michael Patrick McCarty, While Hunting Near Baggs, Wyoming.
I’ve Got Your Back!

 

A Doe Pronghorn Antelope Nurses A Fawn In The Red Desert Of Northern Colorado. Photograph By Michael McCarty
Bring On The Milk

 

A Waterhole On The Red Desert Of Northern Colorado, Surrounded By Sagebrush And Alfalfa. Home Sweet Home, And A Main WAter Source For Pronghorn Antelope, Mule Deer, and Age Grouse. Photograph by Michael McCArty
The Best Of All Worlds – A Spring-Fed Desert Waterhole Surrounded By Sage And Alfalfa

 

The Distinctive Tracks Of Pronghorn Antelope, Found In The Soft Sand At A Waterhole In The Red Desert Of Colorado. Photograph By Michael McCarty
Evidence Of What Was Here, And What May Come

 

A Young Mule Deer Buck And A Doe Pronghorn Antelope Share A Comfortable Summer Evening In The Red Desert Of Northern Colorado. Photograph by Michael McCarty
Mule Deer Like To Party Too!

 

Sage Grouse and Pronghorn Antelope Together On An Early Summer Morning On The Red Desert Of Northern Colorado. Photography by Michael Patrick McCarty
Sage Grouse Like To Have Fun With The Gang

 

A Pronghorn Antelope Buck In The Red Desert of Northern Colorado. Photograph By Michael Patrick MCarty
Eyes of An Eagle; Heart Of A Lion

 

By Michael Patrick McCarty

“The essence of being a really good hunter is, paradoxically, to love the particular species of game you’re after and have enormous respect and consideration for it”.

Hugh Fosburgh, One Man’s Pleasure, 1960

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A Perfect Pair Of Mule Deer Bookends

August 2018

A fine pair of Mule Deer bookends, taken near my ground blind while on a bowhunt for Pronghorn Antelope in Northern Colorado.

 

Two Mule Deer Bucks Seem To Mirror Each Other On The Red Desert Of Colorado. Photograph By Michael McCarty
A Pair To Draw To…!

“From that day on I have been a lover of mule deer…They were my first love and still remain my strongest…Somehow he sight of an old mule deer buck, head high, antlers lying along his broad back, returns me definitely to my childhood and the day I first felt the mystery of wild game and wild country”.

Jack O’Connor, Game in the Desert, Revisited, 1977

Photograph By Michael Patrick McCarty

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The Ghost Spike Of The Night

A Spike Bull Elk, Caught in The Flash Of A Game Trail Camera In Western Colorado. Photograph By Michael McCarty
A Flash In The Darkness

 

September 2018

Lots of things happen after the sun goes down, often when you have just sat for hours in a hot and dusty blind without hide nor hair of a beast with horns.

Still, there is hope in the air, all around. The elk are close, somewhere, just out of sight, but obtainable.

With luck, you may catch them soon, early in the morning, or late in the day, with enough shooting light left to seal the deal.

I hope to see you again, soon, brother elk – and don’t forget to bring along your grandfather.

Can’t wait to meet him…

Good Hunting!

By Michael Patrick McCarty

The Bighorns of The Frying Pan River

Wildlife Photographer Frank Donofrio of Glenwood Springs, Colorado caught this band of Bighorn Sheep on an island in the middle of The Frying Pan River above Basalt.

Enjoy!

 

A Bighorn Sheep Ram Crosses the Frying Pan River near Basalt, Colorado in Bighorn Sheep Unit S44
Heading For the High Country. Photo by Frank Donofrio
Photograph of a small band of bighorn sheep about to enter the Frying Pan River outside of Basalt Colorado in Bighorn Sheep Hunting Unit S44
Come On In. The Water’s Fine. Photograph by Frank Donofrio
Bighorn Sheep near Basalt, Prepare to enter the Frying Pan River in Colorado's Unit S44
MY, My That Water’s Cold! Photograph by Frank Donofrio
A Bighorn Ram crosses the Frying Pan River in northwestern Colorado in Bighorn sheep Unit S44
Just Another Day on The Frying Pan River. Photograph by Frank Donofrio
a female Bighorn sheep crosses the Frying Pan River not far from Aspen, colorado in bighorn sheep hunting unit S44
Almost There! Photograph by Frank Donofrio
A Bighorn Ram prepares to jump in the Frying Pan River near Glewnwood Springs, colorado in Unit S44
Heading In! Photograph by Frank Donofrio
A close up photo of a Male Bighorn Sheep on the Frying Pan River near Carbondale Colorado in Bighorn Sheep Unit S44
There’s Some Good Rams in Unit S44. Photograph by Frank Donofrio
  • In the past, some limited resident and nonresident licenses for archery and rifle hunting have been available by lottery in Bighorn Sheep Unit S44 of Colorado.

Posted by Michael Patrick McCarty

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