Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Lonely Duck

Lonely Duck, originally uploaded by Hannibals Animals.
Digging thru my photo archives, I found this winter scene, and since I haven't posted in awhile, I would submit something wintery!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Crazy Tines

Crazy Tines, originally uploaded by Hannibals Animals.
An encounter with this guy produced very poor quality photos, but I just had to give this guy respect for his his "craziness"! It looks as if he has a long drop tine that forks off. Anyway, I thought he was really cool.

I "tried" to focus out my passenger side window, handholding my ridulculously heavy 300mm f2.8 with 2x attached and failed miserably. I usually have my homemade "seatpod" for these situations, but it was in my trunk. My bad! I added a filter application to try to hide the poor quality.
Crazy Tines IMG_0095 IMG_0092 IMG_0069 IMG_0068

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Knuckle Head

Sometimes bad weather produces the best days in sightings. Although my ISO was set at 400 for lighting purposes this cold and rainy/foggy morning, I was blessed with seeing this massive 16 point buck! Just look at those massive beams! I call this guy "Knuckle Head" for obvious reasons. I am hoping my luck holds in the coming weeks as the rut comes into full swing.

Friday, November 2, 2012

My 2013 Wildlife Calendar is NOW available! 12 months of my best photos including various owls, bucks, cranes, birds, etc... This isn't a flimsy calendar either! I had these made with the highest quality in mind. The pages are produced with PREMIUM glossy card stock. This calendar will not rip off the nail while hanging, like so many other cheap calendars. Order now as I only have a limited quantity available. I also ship within 24 hours!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Handsome Buck

Hello All! I'm sooo glad to be blogging again! It's been a long time coming and frustrating at times, but finally, I found something blogworthy! On a special note: I was laid off this past February, and with that, my desire to photo wildlife was shelved. I felt I needed to step up my game for my portrait photography business and get my life in order. I worked for a newspaper for 19 years, thinking I would retire from there, but as most know, print media is dying. 19 years ago, the internet did not exist. People got their news from TV and newspapers. Who knew that my choice in careers 19 years ago would fizzle out? Not me! We all get most of our news from the web at places like Google, Yahoo and Bing. We surf for everything we need. We resource the internet before we actually buy anything. I always google a review just to make sure I get the best price and quality for my dollar. I surely can't live without the internet, so I carry a small part in my own career's demise. I own that. It is what it is, good and bad... So enough about that, lets get on with the post!

The rut is coming, the rut is coming! I'm sooo excited! My favorite time of year is here! Here's a look at the first big buck I have photo'd this season. He was awesome! He was bedded in the tall grasses and was very difficult to see. I passed him by, distracted by a few does a few yards away. A friend of mine pointed him out with my second pass through. He laid there for quite awhile before deciding to move away, but when he did, it was all worth it! He gave quite a show, standing broadside checking me out, as he finally wandered away looking for better deeper cover to hide in.  What a great buck to lead off the rut!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Injured Owl? UPDATE

Injured Owl?, originally uploaded by Hannibals Animals.
I got a call from a friend who was concerned about an owl that was in her barn. She thought it must be injured or sick because her kids were doing their chores in and around the animal this morning, without a disturbance from the owl. I drove over and found the same thing as I entered the barn. This guy looked pretty normal without visible signs of injury. His eyes seemed droopy, but then plenty of light flooded the interior of the barn. I approached on my knees very slowly, stopping and checking for signs of stress along the way, until I got to about 5 feet. There were no signs of stress or warnings, i.e. hissing or barking, etc... I checked the barn for feathers and saw 1 tail feather but that was it. I checked both flanks, and as far as I could see, no injuries. I called Flint Creek and am waiting on them to return my call...

UPDATE:  Took the owl to a rescue.  Very lethargic so will call and get updates on its health tomorrow...

UPDATE:  It died of neurological issues around 4:30pm yesterday.  The vet worked on him all day and at 1 point thought there was a chance, but then turned for the worse.  Suspect: West Nile Virus

Monday, July 2, 2012

Yellow-crowned Night Heron

A rare species for Illinois, this Yellow-crowned Night Heron showed up in my hometown a week or so ago. What luck! A friend discovered this guy and put out the word... Seeking him out, I was pleased to find him quickly and in decent light.

Various angles, interesting lighting and a catch of the day sealed the deal!

He was also pretty tolerant, letting me approach to about 50 feet. I try never to push him to stress, so I observed his movement and behavior. As long as he fished, I knew he was comfortable. If he watched me for too long, I backed off immediately so that he could continue his natural behavior. He caught a crayfish and I was rewarded for my good wildlife photography etiquette!

Friday, June 15, 2012

Screech Owlets

Vampire Owlet!

  • Hello friends! Sorry its been such a long time since I've posted. I haven't been shooting lately, so I have had nothing to post. Luckily I was inspired by a friends tip that there were 5 Eastern Screech Owlets about 50 miles away. I couldn't resist! I set off a few days ago in search of these creatures and found the area. They were on private land, so I asked for permission and was allowed access. It took awhile to find them, but once I did, I gasped at the sight of them. How lucky I was to see something so rare! They were lined up on 1 branch and I had too much lens! Damn, I didn't bring anything smaller! I made due, and here they are! Not completely shown, but 5 grey morph screech owlets side by side.    
  • Here is Dad 
  •  Mom was above dad, but too hidden for decent photos.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

American Golden Plover - Lifer!

Such an interesting looking bird! I was lucky enough to catch this guy in a flooded area as he migrated through! A lifer for me!

Friday, May 4, 2012

Barred Owlet

Barred Owlet, originally uploaded by Hannibals Animals.

Sometimes a not-so-productive day of wildlife/birding turns around so quickly, just as you are about to call it a day, and today was one of those days. I was leaving my spot after about an hour of boring tree time. I just stared up at the tops of trees, looking for some movement, and nothing was happening. I decided to leave the area when all of a sudden I hear an interesting sound close by. I can't describe the "squawk", but I knew it was a larger throat making that sound. I knew I could not leave until I found the source and scanned the trees & ground.
After a bit of zeroing in on the direction, I see a glimpse of a large wing. I knew immediately that it was the local Barred Owl, and it struck me that just maybe it was with it's owlet. I've never seen a wild barred owlet before so this was gonna be good! I finally spotted them both and the parent flew off. Low and behold, I finally get my barred owlet! And here it is! What a day this turned out to be! You just never know... IMG_7820 IMG_7572 IMG_7611 IMG_7534

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Meet Fiona (my new granddaughter)

I don't normally post "people" pics, but this one is quite special! Baby Fiona was such a great lil model that I had to share this creation with everyone. This is the Birth Announcement I created today after a wonderful photo session, where she couldn't have been any cuter...This photographer couldn't be any happier to announce the arrival of such a precious baby girl to our family!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Moon Units

Moon Units

I found these guys simply adorable!

Killdeer chicks facts: Baby birds that hatch with their running shoes on are called precocial. Precocial means "ripened beforehand." (The word comes from the same Latin source as "precocious.")







I'm Coming MOM!


Monday, April 16, 2012

Leucy - Leucistic Red-tailed Hawk

This extremely elusive Leucistic Red-tailed Hawk was caught off guard while I finally got to take aim at semi-close range. It always flushes, but not too quick today! I love his wing pattern which seems so symetrical for a leucy...
NOTE: Alot of us locals know about the leucistic red-tailed hawk ("Whitey") in Channahon IL which has been photo'd by many. This one is about 20-ish miles from him.

Leucism is a condition characterized by reduced pigmentation in animals. Unlike albinism, it is caused by a reduction in all types of skin pigment, not just melanin.