Thursday, November 3, 2011

Animals and Birds of Prey (Chickadees, Ruffled Grouse,Beaver and Otters) on the Vermilon River. A Post to SWF.

 Rapids Of the Vermilon River.
I know you're saying to yourself, prey, those guys, chickadees, beavers, otters, grouse. But step outside the box for a moment. These are the hardest guys to photograph in the wilderness. They prey on poor amateur wilderness photographers such as me.Sure you can go to the zoo for beavers or otters; you can feed chickadees at your feeders, and even lure them to your hand, but try photographing them in the forest, their own environment. They'll drive you you nuts, just as the beavers or otters do. And the Ruffled Grouse, she even wears her own camo in a forest floor that's dressed in fall brown.. All these photos were taken on the west side of the river on a very gray day, and strangely enough after other people and dogs had passed through. Does that mean Boom & I are getting more woodsy all the time?

White Water.

Beaver Area.

 This is a female Ruffled Grouse that I was fortunate enough to capture, but only one good photo out of four. She's an incredible beauty isn't she.She represents the fourth attempt at capturing some photos of a grouse. 

These are four Black-capped Chickadee photos of one of the most interesting but flighty birds in existence. They're so fast that by the time you have them in focus, they've moved.

This beaver was photographed in the river area shown above. He slapped the river, dove, and kept me waiting for at least 10 minutes, while he resurfaced Not only that but I have about 10 frames of a deadhead log that I thought was him.

The Otter are equally illusive. About a year ago I was seated by the small creek near the east track, when two of these guys passed. I had the 500mm lens on and got two photos of black smudgy fur because they were so close. I've been hunting them since and found the three of them in the wetland next to the abandoned RR line on the west side of the River. Of course, they dove and I had to wait for them to resurface also.

The red squirrels are a bit easier to photograph  now as they're frantic to gather food for winter, but try to get them in the summer. But I think you know, what I mean by birds and animals of prey. A Post to SWF @
To activate the slide show, click any photo.


  1. A delightful journey today and food for thought regarding photographers on the capturees time schedule. Otter and Beaver and that gorgeous grouse as well as the ADDH chickadees--nicely done.
    Happy Trails, you two.

  2. Beautiful post, my favourite is the Grouse, it's so superb.

  3. Nice shots including the beaver and otters. I always struggle to get otter shots. And so many of them!

  4. your shots amaze me! those otters!!! fabulous!! and the grouse? wow!

    and you can NEVER go wrong by ending with a squirrel! really enjoyed these, gary! thanks for your perseverence!

  5. Great selection Gary. Love that grouse.

  6. Hi Gary

    I am totally in awe of this post. A grouse, great shots of a beaver and 3 otters wow I have never had a good look at a grouse and I have never seen wild otters so that you got good photos blows me away. I always look forward to your posts and I really like the way you include some landscape shots to set the stage. I hold I can do something similar when I get to spend more time at our cabin.

    All the best.

  7. Wonderful Gary! I tried in vain up at the cottage to photograph the resident beavers. I hope you and Boomer took snacks, it must have taken hours to get these fabulous shots!

  8. Hi there - great set of shots - But I think you should have included a shot of the log as well!

    Cheers - Stewart M - Australia

  9. Hi Gary,

    again, beautiful pictures!
    The grouse is really amazing! Nice hairdoe :)
    And I love otter, they are so cute! But also the squirrel is really lovely. Especially how it is holding its hands!

    Greetings and have a nice weekend
    Yvonne and Raphael

  10. Beautiful post and I love them all!
    Greetings from Holland,
    Anna :-))

  11. Stunning photograph's Gary. Thanks for taking us trough your wonderfull landscapes.
    Have a nice weekend.

  12. The scenes of the landscape are so beautiful, and for someone who likes to draw and paint like I, the portrait of the grouse is very intriguing!

  13. Wow - your photos get better every time I see your posts! Fabulous beaver shots and that squirrel - just adorable!

  14. So gorgeous nature. I love the cute squirrel! Have a great day.

  15. Wildlife are tricky to capture at play but you sure to manage to post some great photos.

  16. A very interesting post and great photos. I especially like the ones of the beavers and otters. The water is beautiful.

  17. I don't think I have seen a grouse before - have to look it up :)

  18. Yup this post's title had me going there for a minute! I think you and Boom are becoming so familiar to the birds and beasts that they are posing for you! I'm so happy just to see any of those creatures, never mind getting a picture.

    Love chickadees and they sure are speedy little imps. (I wonder how they manage to stay alive, they spend more calories than then ingest I'm sure.) Wonderful photos all!

  19. That grouse is really a beauty! The squirrel looks fabulous too in that lovely light. The beaver and otter shots certainly are results of patience. Great collection!

  20. Ruffled Grouse, yes she is beautuful. I enlarged the shot to see it better. :)