Archive for the ‘Wildlife’ Category

Any issues related to wildlife photography such as environmental factors, land management agency concerns, technical issues with wildlife photography, and other wildlife notes. And of course, photos of bears, moose, caribou, wolves, birds, squirrels, and more.

How big is a polar bear?

Tuesday, March 7th, 2017
Large adult male polar bears can weigh over 1400lbs. Polar bear, Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska.

Large adult male polar bears can weigh over 1400lbs. Polar bear, Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska.

Seriously? How big?

We’ve all heard polar bears are the largest terrestrial carnivore, right? We’ll side-step the rather silly idea of labelling Ursus maritimus (Sea bear), a marine mammal, as a “land-based carnivore for the moment. Instead consider the post behind it. Polar bears are the largest predator on land. This begs the question “just how big are polar bears?”

That’s a tough question to answer, for a number of reasons.

What does “big” mean? How tall? How heavy? What’s the volume?

Generally animals are measured by weight. Largely because weight can be such a good indicator of health and particularly population health. So we’ll consider the question (for now) of “How heavy is a polar bear?”. (more…)

Wrangell Mountains: Image of the Month, March 2017

Wednesday, March 1st, 2017

Wrangell Mountains in Wrangell - St. Elias National Park, Alaska.

Mt. Drum, Mt Sanford, Mt Wrangell, Wrangell Mountains, Wrangell – St. Elias National Park, Alaska.


Hey folks,

Welcome to March, 2017!

A photo of my favorite view. And a view I’ve seen many, many times this winter. The Wrangell Mountains. Left to right, you’re looking at Mt Drum, Mt. Sanford, Mt Zanetti (the little “cone” shaped peak and Mt Wrangell.

To give you a perspective on this mountain range …. Mt. Zanetti, the tiny little cone .. is the same volume mountain as Mt. St. Helens, in Oregon. The one that went “Boom” all those years ago.

The Wrangells Rock.

Cheers

Carl

Favorite Photos 2016

Saturday, December 24th, 2016

Hey Folks,

It’s that time of the year again. Wrapping up image editing and putting together a quick gallery of photos from the year for you. These are mostly from different photo tours we ran this year. (more…)

Brown bear fishing – Image of the Month, Sept 2016

Thursday, September 8th, 2016
A brown bear chasing salmon in a small stream along the coast of Katmai National Park, Alaska. Ursus arctos, brown bear.

A brown bear fishing, chasing salmon in a small stream along the coast of Katmai National Park, Alaska. Ursus arctos, brown bear.

Hey Folks,

Been a while. Sorry about that. Summer is too often the season of not updating the blog. This summer, it’s mostly been photographing the great brown bears of the Katmai Coast.

I’ve had a great summer, and spent much of it photographing bears. In another week, I head off for 2 more weeks of brown bear photography, followed by 2 weeks of polar bear photography. Should be a blast.

This shot was taken last week on a fantastic trip camped along the Katmai Coast. Great fun.

Cheers

Carl

Image of the Month: Brown Bear Cub

Monday, March 7th, 2016
A cute young brown bear cub strolls by, Katmai National Park, Alaska.

A cute young brown bear cub strolls by, Katmai National Park, Alaska.

Hey Folks

Here’s a curious young brown bear cub from one of our photo tours last summer. We had a blast photographing this guy and his sibling and mom; amazingly cute, try tolerant of our group, and they loved to play. We all got some great photo opportunities on the trip.

The bear tours are extremely popular, and always a ton of fun. Bears are just such an amazing animal to be around. (more…)

2 Polar Bear Cubs Play a Game of Tag on Ice

Saturday, February 6th, 2016

(more…)

Have a great new years’, folks!

Thursday, December 31st, 2015
A large male polar bear walks across the ice of the frozen Beaufort Sea in Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

A large male polar bear walks across the ice of the frozen Beaufort Sea, silhouetted against a deep red sunrise in Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

Hey All

From here in Alaska, Expeditions Alaska is wishing you a wonderful evening for New Years’ Eve and all the very best for the coming year!

Cheers

Carl

Favorite photos for 2015

Monday, December 21st, 2015

Hey Folks,

So, for my participation in Jim Goldstein’s annual photos of the year presentation, I thought I’d roll along with some of my personal favorites.

The northern lights were fantastic all year, and we had some great opportunities on our trips. Way too much fun shooting these all night long. The great grizzly bears or brown bears of Katmai never ease to amaze, and we had some excellent trips there. Polar bears are always a treat to photograph, as were the bald eagles of Haines and the backcountry trips to Wrangell – St. Elias National Park and Gates of the Arctic National Park are always special.

And this year, I came closer than ever to photographing a wolverine. Way, way way too close! Maybe next year. 🙂

So, without further ado, here are some images from this year (more…)

Image of the Month, Dec 2015; Bald Eagle on Chilkat River

Tuesday, December 1st, 2015
A mature bald eagle flies right by the camera, wings spread wide as he focuses on the fish in front of him.

A mature bald eagle flies right by the camera, wings spread wide as he focuses on the fish in front of him. Click on the image above to view a larger version of the photo.

Hey Folks,

Here’s the final Image of the Month for 2015. a bald eagle from the Chilkat River, near Haines last week. Fun times down there, with a mix of weather, but some good shooting opportunities along the way. The eagles were a little farther out than we’d like them to be, but with a little patience, we’d get a nice photo opp come our way. This is one of my favorites from the trip.

Enjoy!

Cheers

Carl

Brown Bears of the Alaska Coast

Tuesday, November 10th, 2015
A brown bear sow nurses her year old cub (one of 2) on the sedge grass flats at Hallo Bay, Katmai National Park, Alaska.

A brown bear sow nurses her year old cub (one of 2) on the sedge grass flats at Hallo Bay, Katmai National Park, Alaska. Please click on the image above to view a larger version of the photo.

Hey Folks,

Here’s an image taken this past summer at Hallo Bay, in Katmai National Park. The sow has 2 cubs, and this one was just finishing nursing from her when I made this photo. The other sibling, a male, had taken his fill already and wandered over to a nearby wood pile to explore and climb around on. There’s always plenty of action at Hallo Bay.

Brown bears will nurse for as long as 2 years, and some even longer. It’s an amazing experience to be so close to, and hear the growling and purring and moaning and all the little noises they make. I once watched 4 cubs nurse at once from their mother, and it was a symphony of different sounds coming from a tangled mess of fur. Pretty cute.

I can’t think of an animal I enjoy photographing as much as bears, be they brown, black, white or other. The grizzlies of interior Alaska, the polar bears of the arctic, the black bears of the forest and lush coastal areas, are just an amazing animal to photograph. They’re often super tolerant of us, and all our frenetic clicking and gasps of excitement over what to them is, I’m sure, often very benign daily behaviors.

Next year I’ll be at Hallo Bay in early August, running the Alaska Brown Bears and Coastal Wildlife Tour in conjunction with Greg Downing and his awesome photography instruction company, Naturescapes. Greg’s an incredible photographer, and I’m really looking forward to working with him once again.

In case you didn’t see it, here’s a video of some incredible action from the year’s tour.

 

If you’re interested in coming out next summer, hit me or Greg up and have a chat. Katmai’s always a blast and you’re never quite sure what surprises it holds.

Cheers

Carl

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Owner and guide Carl Donohue.

 

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