Untamed Land

Untamed Land
Untamed Land

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Goodbye to the Bears, and a New Bird

These photos are the last batch from my Redoubt Bay trip. I shot about 500 photos on that short visit. 
I am happy that I was able to get so much resource material for future paintings. I do want to emphasize what a thrill it was to sit safely in a boat and observe bears from distances that would have been near suicidal from the shore. The bears were more accepting of people in boats than they would have been to people on foot. Kind of like the animals that you see on safari in Africa.
I wanted to get shots of bears in a variety of different settings.
It would be nice to go back there in a kayak or other small boat and spend enough time to photograph bears at my leisure, especially in the early morning and late afternoon when there will hopefully be fewer fishermen..
There was some rough play between younger bears.
They made a lot of noise and thrashed the bushes but were not trying to hurt each other.
Their behavior was so much like dogs at play.
Watching all this helps you to realize the incredible strength that these creatures possess.
They also displayed some tender affection toward one another.
This is one of my favorite photos of the trip. I am planning a painting with this photo in mind.
In the meantime I got a new bird late Sunday evening. It is one that may be very familiar to many of you but it is a very recent arrival to Alaska. 
It was eating Elderberries in the only Elderberry bush in Elderberry Park in downtown Anchorage. In fact this is the first sighting of a Eurasian Collared Dove in Anchorage.
About 50 years ago they got established somewhere way down south and have been spreading north at a steady pace. Now they are ubiquitous in much of the country. Kind of like the spread of Starlings. Eurasian Collared Doves look a lot more delicate than Starlings but they have to be tough to establish a toehold in Alaska, which they have done in many parts of the state.


Jeremy Pearse said...

What an amazing trip! Lots of great bear photos too and I bet you saw tons of other interesting stuff - looking forward to seeing some new paintings!

john said...

Thanks for your comment Jeremy. I would love to go back sometime and hopefully spend more time there. It is a very beautiful area.

John Holmes said...

Those young bears make compelling viewing !

john said...

Thanks for your comments Jeremy and John. I do hope to go back next Summer.

Camera Trap Codger said...

It's been a while, but I've enjoyed catching up with your activities. Love the flight deck painting and bear photos. Must get up to Alaska again next year.

john said...

Thanks for your comments Codger