Wild Dogs Gorging – Republished

Dogs on Kill_2011_10_22_3329
This image was probably the most difficult of a recent trip. We had been following a pack of wild dog (Lycaon pictus) as they went about their hunt. A small part of the pack isolated an impala antelope and gave chase, successfully bringing it down just off the Zambezi River flood plain. The light was fading… one had to gallop with camera 200m to get to the vantage point from which this was taken. After a hard run, the excitement of the opportunity, and taking this image without a tripod, not to mention the dogs kicking up dust, this series of shots was only asking for failure. Fortunately a old fallen tree provided stability for a hard breathing photographer. The dogs nearly consumed the entire antelope in the period it took the photographer to run 200m.
(Canon 7D; f/5,6; 1/125sec; ISO-400; 360mm)

Picture ©2011 Andrew Field – Simply Wild Photography

Advertisements

Scattering Vultures

Scattering Vultures_2015_08_18_0456

Vultures are a pretty common sight in the African wild, and they tend to gather where carnivores are present, being predominantly scavengers of carrion. The Hooded Vulture (Necrosyrtes monachus) is quite prolific in the Mana Pools National Park, despite being listed as endangered in some publications. They are usually present where there are wild dogs or any kill and often alert observers to the presence of a kill. These two birds took off when disturbed by the photographer.
(Canon EOS 5D Mark III / EF100-400mm IS II USM; 1/6400 sec; f/5; ISO 640; 170mm)

Picture ©2015 Andrew Field – Simply Wild Photography

Photography Quotes

Elliott Erwitt is a French born photographer whose family emigrated from Europe to the United States in the shadow of the Second World War. He commenced his photographic career in the Army while serving in France and Germany, after the war, in the 1950’s, and he eventually ventured into freelance work. He is often categorised as an advertising and documentary photographer, known for his black and white candid shots of ironic and absurd everyday events and a master of Henri Cartier-Bresson’s “decisive moment”. One of his passions was photography of dogs, for which he published a few books of his works. Erwitt is credited with the following quotation:

“Making pictures is a very simple act. There is no great secret in photography…schools are a bunch of crap. You just need practice and application of what you’ve learned. My absolute conviction is that if you are working reasonably well the only important thing is to keep shooting…it doesn’t matter whether you are making money or not. Keep working, because as you go through the process of working things begin to happen.”

This image, and others of your selection, can be acquired from the author printed on fine art canvas of photographic paper for wall mounting.
Please be encouraged to click on the ‘Comments’ link below and rate the photograph 1 to 5 stars. This feedback is invaluable to the photographer. If you are feeling awfully kind you could Tweet it or share the link too!

Stuck in darkest Africa, lost in the wild and loving it! Don’t let me out of here…

Wild Pups on Alert

Wild Dog Pups_2014_10_05_4036

One might guess that our sentiment towards Wild Dogs (Lycaon pictus) is not too different to that we hold for our pets. This image of a pup nursery was taken amidst the chaos of a wild dog hunt early one morning in Mana Pools. The young dogs were apprehensive about the presence of so many photographers running amok after the hunting pack to get that ultimate shot, much to the disgust of most observers. The dog’s curiosity was aroused by the author’s presence, lying on his stomach in static observation awaiting the hunting pack’s return to feed their pups. Wild dogs will gorge themselves full at the site of a kill and then return to the nursery area to disgorge on demand to their awaiting young and other adults who remained with the pups.
(Canon EOS 5D Mark III/EF70-200mm IS USM + 1.4x; 1/640 sec; f/4.0; ISO 1000; 280mm)

Picture ©2014 Andrew Field – Simply Wild Photography

Photography Quotes
Dorothea Lange was an American documentary photographer and photojournalist, renowned for her Depression-era work. She humanised the consequences of the Great Depression in her images and developed the art of documentary photography in her time. Lange is attributed with the quote:

“The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera.”

This image, and others of your selection, can be acquired from the author printed on fine art canvas of photographic paper for wall mounting.
Please be encouraged to click on the ‘Comments’ link below and rate the photograph 1 to 5 stars. This feedback is invaluable to the photographer. If you are feeling awfully kind you could Tweet it or share the link too!

Stuck in darkest Africa, lost in the wild and loving it! Don’t let me out of here…

Three Wild Dogs

Three Wild Dogs_2011_10_23_3010_1024px

These three, young, wild dogs (Lycaon pictus) were part of a larger pack, affectionately known as the Ellis Robins crowd*. They had settled in along an all but dried up river line to rest out the day before the evening hunt. Their camouflage is quite effective. Being shot in mostly shade, with speckled light filtering through the trees, this shot was not easy from a distance.
(Canon 7D; f/6,3; 1/125sec; ISO-320; 400mm)

Picture ©2011 Andrew Field – Simply Wild Photography

*It’s a long story…

Digital Wildlife Photographic Tips

While not particularly sold on the technology, most DSLR cameras have a depth of field review button which, when pressed, will highlight the sharper elements of the image about to be taken and darken those likely to be out of focus. This facility is better utilised when the camera is set to live view. Unfortunately, wildlife photography comprises many quick opportunity shots being taken and there is little time to fiddle with some of the buttons at your disposal. Know where the depth of field review is and practice using it… you never know!

Wild Pups

Wild Pups_2013_10_06_1719_768x474

Sitting so close to Wild Dogs (Lycaon pictus) in a mud-crusty pan during the last hour of light is not everyone’s idea of fun, but for the author it is always a pleasurable moment; no matter the discomfort crawling into position on one’s stomach, lugging your camera kit along. These two dogs were part of a bigger pack which had settled in an almost dried pan for the day. They were beginning to stir for the hunt. Where game is abundant, it is not unknown for packs to enjoy both breakfast and dinner. Their endurance on the hunt is incredible. Research suggests these animals can maintain speeds of 55 kph for several kilometres, but rarely have to exceed 3 kilometres before taking down their quarry.
(Canon EOS 50D/EF100-400mm; f/10.0; 1/60sec; ISO-800; 400mm)

Picture ©2013 Andrew Field – Simply Wild Photography

Digital Wildlife Photographic Tips

Pin sharp images contribute to critical success in wildlife photography and the eyes always count. Using auto-focus with fixed centre point selection has a number of drawbacks when composing your image. Rather than focusing and then composing, the photographer can compose and focus by using a using flexible-spot auto-focus. This moves the point of focus around the view-finder to suit your composition. Most DSLR cameras provide a well-placed button and multi-direction controller for this purpose. Practice often before you go to the bush.