Category Archives: SHOT FROM THE FILE

Southern Fur Seal – The Trespasser

The Trespasser

The Trespasser

     It was a case of trespass, but the the trespasser lost his nerve.  A bull Southern Fur Seal aggressively charges as a would-be interloper submissively dodges the onslaught.

~ Anecdote and Southern Fur Seal capture, The Trespasser © Jerry L. Ferrara.  South Georgia, inside the Antarctic confluence.

Alaskan Brown Bear – Dance the Bear

Dance the Bear

Dance the Bear

     Being aware, alert, and constantly vigilant can be very crucial when attempting to create or capture moments that are ephemeral in Nature.  Take, for example, the Alaskan Brown Bear.  They perform a captivating behavior of periodically rising on their back legs while in tall grass in order to avoid a surprise encounter with another bear.  They often don’t seem to hold the posture very long.  Out on the river, bears will likewise perform this maneuver, but in these cases the canny creatures seem to be employing the move to gain sight of a potential meal … Sockeye Salmon.  One never knows when the performance will be carried out and staying focused is mandatory for catching it!  As this bear struck a course across the river, it suddenly rose up and instead of dropping immediately, it began to “hoof it” on its hindquarters.  With the liquid running from its prodigious forepaws, the bear boogied through the shallows seemingly to dance.  Granted the disco movement didn’t last long, and the short cavort was terminated when a meal wasn’t spied.  This capture brought the title Dance the Bear to waltz into my mind … and in this case vigilance paid off!

~ Anecdote and Alaskan Brown Bear capture, Dance the Bear © Jerry L. Ferrara

Northern Hawk Owl – Surprise! Surprise!

Surprise! Surprise!

Surprise! Surprise!

     The Northern Hawk Owl is an uncommon visitor to the northern tier states primarily residing in Canada and Alaska.  The spunky species’ winter irruptive meanderings to our North Idaho region are unpredictable events…and often quite a surprise.

    A whirlwind of energy, the Northern Hawk Owl is a sixteen inch incarnation of terror to the rodent world as the puckish creature pursues its metier as a super-predator.  Many a vole, mouse and pocket gopher fall prey when the Northern Hawk Owl is near.

Surprise! Surprise! Look quick at those eyes.
Hunter intense, they fail to disguise
what transpires in a hawk owl’s mind:
the functions of a predator’s kind.

~ Essay, poem and Northern Hawk Owl capture, Surprise! Surprise! © Jerry L. Ferrara

Rocky Mountain Elk – Chaos Reigned the Arena

Chaos Reigned the Arena

Chaos Reigned the Arena

     An inconstant sense pervaded the setting.  It held the visceral timbre of a harbinger.  An event was shaping up and all bedlam was about to break loose.

     As a small herd of Rocky Mountain Elk materialized on the open flat, its harem master bellowed and bugled truculent challenges.  What soon followed was the appearance of several more elk breeding units.  Eighty-plus head of the magnificent beasts had coalesced in what had evolved into an arena event…and the contests began.

     When any of the alpha bulls from different herds faced off, the skirmishes were unfailingly accompanied by the clashing, rattling and locking together of ivory-tipped weaponry.  At times several such bouts were simultaneously underway and there were mercurial moments when the individual harems were so close to one another they were indistinguishable.  This, in turn, seemed to drive the combatants into helter-skelter frenzy as they were caught in conflict between battling an opponent and maintaining their constituents.  Chaos reigned the arena.

~ Essay and Rocky Mountain Elk capture, Chaos Reigned the Arena © Jerry L. Ferrara

Mountain Goat – Leap For Joy

Leap For Joy

Leap For Joy

     Three Mountain Goat kids were bounding, gamboling, and “rough housing” when this one youngster seemingly performed a leap for joy hurtling upward only to land sure-footedly on the rocky incline.  Earthbound once again, it grabbed one of its playmates from behind with its fore-limbs then suddenly released, turned, and slammed into its other playmate.  All went off tumbling and gyrating, seemingly intoxicated with themselves.  The energy exhibited by the playful troupe was amazing as they continued butting and chasing each other in the rarified high mountain atmosphere.  They appeared to define the phrase “kids will be kids”.

~ Anecdote and Mountain Goat capture, Leap For Joy © Jerry L. Ferrara

Ocelot – From The Edge of Darkness

From The Edge of Darkness

From The Edge of Darkness

     Light slowly dimmed in the Brazilian jungle as night’s advent crept imperceptibly into the underwood.  Creature voices, hidden in the entanglement, periodically spoke out but the conversations were brief.  Then silence blanketed the milieu.

     From the edge of darkness a shape took form, or was it but a figment?  In time the illusion manifested.  An Ocelot was on the stalk.

~ Anecdote and Ocelot capture, From The Edge of Darkness © Jerry L. Ferrara

Dall Sheep – A Couple of Living Dalls

A Couple of Living Dalls

A Couple of Living Dalls

     Hiking through the dense, thick willows at the base of Denali’s Igloo Mountain, I kept a sharp eye peeled for any sign of Grizzly Bear … didn’t relish the thought of a close encounter of the bruin-kind under the prevailing conditions.  Once the willows gave way, it was clear trekking ahead and nearing the summit I was greeted by a band of Dall Sheep ewes and lambs resting peacefully in the idyllic, pastoral setting.  For this shot I moved in and isolated two snow-white youngsters on a gentle hillock.  As the lamb on the left gave a sleepy yawn, it appeared to be “talking” to its companion on the  right which happenstance cocked its head as if listening to its partner precisely as the capture was made.  They just looked like a couple of living Dalls.

~ Anecdote and Dall Sheep capture, A Couple of Living Dalls © Jerry L. Ferrara

Bald Eagle – A Burst Of Glory

A Burst Of Glory

A Burst Of Glory

     The speed of the undertaking was nothing less than meteoric as the feathered creature plummeted from the open sky toward a languishing, scaly target fixed isolated on the lake’s somber veneer. At death’s door, with its spawning role complete, the Kokanee Salmon held little life in its weary, spent body … for it, passing on would be a blessing. And so it was as the Bald Eagle’s steely talons hit the water’s surface with a violent force, grasping the dying fish and sending a mountain of moisture into the air. As the mighty predator’s momentum carried it forward, it surged heavenward on grandiose outstretched wings. What trailed behind was a burst of glory.

From far above a sky bound beast
so rockets swiftly to the feast.
As talons break the waterline they seize the flesh that’s gone supine.
The eagle clutches matter gory
but leaves behind a burst of glory.

~ Anecdote, poem and Bald Eagle capture, A Burst Of Glory © Jerry L. Ferrara.  From the book, Wild North Idaho:  Season Of The Eagle.

Capybara – Babes On The Shore

Babes On The Shore

Babes On The Shore

     The power boat cruised at warp speed.  As it approached a sharp bend in the river, its forward progress slowed significantly.  On the wide, sandy beach at the curve, an adult Capybara unhurriedly moved from the liquid border to the nearby thicket.  In tow, two of its offspring froze momentarily.  They were mere babes on the shore.  The boat moved on.

~ Anecdote and Capybara capture, Babes On The Shore © Jerry L. Ferrara

Brazilian Scenic – Rise The Sun

Rise The Sun

Rise The Sun

Rise the sun.
Day’s begun.
This marks an end
as darkness wends,
and brings the light
that quells the night.
A brightened drape
does shape the scape.

~ Poem and Brazilian scenic daybreak capture, Rise The Sun © Jerry L. Ferrara