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01-08-2011, 12:40 PM   #31
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One of the good things, Jolepp, at least here in the USA, is most of the thnigs that are illegal for hunting (actually all the things you mention) with guns are permissible with a camera.
There are no restrictions or seasons for photography, and I spend a lot of time photographing in public areas closed to all traditional hunting, such as State Parks. Hunting is a conversation tool authorities use to control populations, such as deer, that don't have natural predators, so in areas closed to all hunting, they often overpopulate, which is good for photography, but bad for the deer, because they overpopulate to the point of mass starvation and are more subseptable to diseases. Another place I've used is golf courses. Because these areas are so lush, they're often loaded with wildlife. Deer and other critters proliferate to the point they become pests, costing thousands of dollars in damage, and most of them apply to the state to have special hunts to thin the populations.
Utilizing hunting skills and tricks (some of them illegal for traditional harvests) to photograph in areas closed to hunting is a great way to get shots.
The number one rule is: go where the animals are most abundant. The second rule is: set up where the animals want to go within that area. The third rule is: shoot during the times of day when animals are most active (usually early and late).

01-08-2011, 12:51 PM   #32
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ron Kruger Quote
The difference is in the noise levels and familiarity. I don't use ATVs--actually hate the things and how they disturb wildlife and me. But I have some experience with chain saws. Deer are courious creatures, and I'm convinced they often come in to check out what all that noise is about while I'm out cutting wood. I've seen them often. They don't come close, but usually stand just back in the edge of the woods in the shadows at about 100 yards. As long as you don't walk around or kill the engine, they'll usually stand there and study you. The second you shut it off, however, they bolt. Even if you leave it running and walk over to get a camera, they'll bolt.
A car is much different, not just because it is quieter, but because they become accustomed to seeing vehicles on roads. ATVs are a dramatic and obnoxious intrustion.
I don't think ATVs are a good way to either hunt or photograph. I do, however, use rattling and calls sometimes to attract deer to my blinds.
Ron, one of the reasons that deer are attracted to chain saw noise is that they associate it with food. All those delicious buds and browse that were once out of reach are now easy pickings...well as soon as that stupid human gets out of the way any way.
Back when I was a forestry student in the NY Adirondaks, we used to help feed the yarded up deer by dropping trees along the parimeter of the yard. The deer would actually gather just out of range and wait for the trees to come down, and then they'd strip them of anything edible in almost no time.

NaCl(they hear dinner coming)H2O
01-08-2011, 12:58 PM   #33
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QuoteOriginally posted by BillM Quote
Have never really noticed defensive reaction in shuting engine down,
associated movement on the other hand, does seem to put criiters off.
Have wondered if rear-view mirrors might be a factor.
Anyone ever try to shoot prong-horn antelope in wyoming and notice difference
between inside/outside, moving/stopped?
Because of safe operation of motor vehicle, I mentioned bringing a friend.
Wife might get mad if I bring a lover, Dave(LOL)
Wondering if anyone has used portable goose blinds that form a reclining chair
on ground, shrouded by some material. Seems like that would work pretty good,
though it might restrict movement a little bit
Bill, I've used portable blinds--still do. I have one of those folding blinds with a folding chair as the base and a spring-loaded canopy that folds over the whole thing, completely concealing you, your camera and movements. They're too small for a tripod, but I use my monopod from them. Seemed like a neat, light, portable idea, but after using it for three years now, I don't think it works very well. Not sure why, but I think it is the same as with any blind one constructs. The woods are their living room, and just as you notice when your wife rearranges the furnature, critters notice when something is out of place or added. If you can leave it there for a week or more, they get used to it, but just packing one of these portable blinds in and setting up doesn't seem to work well for me.
The best blinds I've found are fallen trees and other natural blinds. Simply sitting against a tree wider than your shoulders works well. (This is how experts hunt turkeys.) It helps, to choose an area or blind position that is in the shade. Most animals, especially deer, are color blind, so they see contrasts, and there are fewer contrast in the shade. You need something to break up your outline and mask minor movements. Fallen trees are best for this. If they still have some leaves on them, all the better.
Though many animals are technically color blind, they don't see in a true black and white, but more like a sepia tone print.
01-08-2011, 01:05 PM   #34
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Here too hunting is quite regulated (and for good reasons), and it would seem that there are few laws (except those dealing with privacy and invasion thereof, and maybe espionage :-) that would restrict photography (again, for a good reason, namely that there would be little reason to such laws :-)

01-08-2011, 01:08 PM   #35
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Thanks Ron, was recently offered one by frustrated goose hunter, kinda had the
notion it might be a "one shot thing". Staying in shadows as you mentioned
is paramount. If someone leans against tree ( this is "been there/done that) thing
"Ants in pants" is not just idle chit-chat, make sure your "covered".
01-08-2011, 01:21 PM   #36
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QuoteOriginally posted by NaClH2O Quote
Ron, one of the reasons that deer are attracted to chain saw noise is that they associate it with food. All those delicious buds and browse that were once out of reach are now easy pickings...well as soon as that stupid human gets out of the way any way.
Back when I was a forestry student in the NY Adirondaks, we used to help feed the yarded up deer by dropping trees along the parimeter of the yard. The deer would actually gather just out of range and wait for the trees to come down, and then they'd strip them of anything edible in almost no time.

NaCl(they hear dinner coming)H2O
Thanks. That makes sense, especially during the winter, when natural browse is scarce. We had a bumper mast crop this year in the Ozarks, and you no doubt know how much deer love acrons, so I didn't see many this year. The whole woods was a dinner, so they stayed deep for the most part and moved very little. We don't get the snow cover you do, and although they travel in larger groups during the winter, they don't "yard" like in the Adirondaks and northern teir of states. Fallen acorns during a good crop are available to them all winter. Life is good for deer this year--not so much for photographers.
01-09-2011, 12:04 PM   #37
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QuoteQuote:
If you can leave it there for a week or more, they get used to it, but just packing one of these portable blinds in and setting up doesn't seem to work well for me.
You pegged it, anything new they avoid. Let it sit there for a couple of weeks and it's no problem. That's exactly why your portable blind doesn't work well. If you build a natural blind, be prepared to let it sit there for a while before using it, most animals, especially deer and turkey, will veer around it for at least a week or two. When I was into hunting I'd put my deer stand up at least a month before deer season. Usually just a ladder with a platform attached...bring it in that day and you can forget it.
01-09-2011, 12:28 PM   #38
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QuoteOriginally posted by Paleo Pete Quote
You pegged it, anything new they avoid. Let it sit there for a couple of weeks and it's no problem. That's exactly why your portable blind doesn't work well. If you build a natural blind, be prepared to let it sit there for a while before using it, most animals, especially deer and turkey, will veer around it for at least a week or two. When I was into hunting I'd put my deer stand up at least a month before deer season. Usually just a ladder with a platform attached...bring it in that day and you can forget it.
Yes Pete. If you build a blind, even from natural materials, you change things, and they will notice, though not as much as something completely foriegn. That's why I think the best is to simply climb into a fallen tree near their trail, without changing anything. The twisted limbs and remaining leaves hide your outline and mask small movements. The only thing I do is trim or break away small branches and things that might get in the way of shots.
Deer in particular don't seem to expect danger from fallen trees and will pass right next to them without looking in. I have captured some of my tightest shots, even head protraits this way.
What I do most often is follow a well-used trail, looking for fallen trees just off the trail. When I spot a likely deadfall, I check the wind to make sure that when I climb into the deadfall, the wind is blowing my scent away from the trail, not toward it. Direction of the wind is the most important thing.

01-09-2011, 01:06 PM   #39
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QuoteOriginally posted by Paleo Pete Quote
let it sit there for a while
Group of friends and I went on a float-trip of Buffalo rvr in Ark. in '76. State had
placed a number of cameras & triggers in weather proof enclosures streamside
to guage canoe traffic, when we got to takeout state patrol was searching every
canoe(we were clean) one of the gals with us asked trooper "was it a 35mm?"
trooper shot back " NO, THEY WERE EXPENSIVE ONES". Can only guess what that
meant.

know what you guys are saying about the presentation of appliances,and how
wary and perceptive wildlife are to them. Do want to be careful about leaving
anything valuable unattended on public ground.
04-06-2011, 10:50 AM   #40
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An update, My dad is setting up a blind near a deer feeding patch. I am taking a trip up to MO the end of May, so the wildlife will be used to the blind. So we will be good to go.

I will post anything I get that is decent. I am thinking of renting a DA* 200, but with gas prices what they are... may opt to spend that on a tank of gas to get there.

slinky
04-06-2011, 06:27 PM - 1 Like   #41
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I don't know if it has been mentioned already but....Once you see something DON'T LET YOUR EYE LEAVE THE VEIWFINDER! I have been caught taking my eye away to look at what is going on and sure enough that is when the bird takes flight or the deer turns it head to look at you or whatever. Fight that desire to watch what is going on because if you just watch it then you're the only one that saw it and you miss that picture you were searching for. Watch the action through the veiwfinder use the rapid fire setting for your shutter button and get alot of shots to capture the action sequence so you can hold it down and let the camera go crazy!
04-06-2011, 07:01 PM   #42
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Interesting point, littledrawe--I'll try ;~)
04-08-2011, 02:26 PM   #43
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QuoteOriginally posted by littledrawe Quote
I don't know if it has been mentioned already but....Once you see something DON'T LET YOUR EYE LEAVE THE VEIWFINDER! I have been caught taking my eye away to look at what is going on and sure enough that is when the bird takes flight or the deer turns it head to look at you or whatever. Fight that desire to watch what is going on because if you just watch it then you're the only one that saw it and you miss that picture you were searching for. Watch the action through the veiwfinder use the rapid fire setting for your shutter button and get alot of shots to capture the action sequence so you can hold it down and let the camera go crazy!
This is excellent advice: one of those things I do all the time, but take for granted. When you're close, even the slightest movement can spook wild animals. I swear I have spooked wild turkeys at 30 yards by simply blinking or moving my finger to the trigger while hunting.
I also try to wait until the right distance and pose before taking the first shot, because I've had animals spook at the shutter noise. Once I start, though, I fall into rapid fire mode.

Last edited by Ron Kruger; 04-08-2011 at 02:29 PM. Reason: adding info
04-08-2011, 10:43 PM   #44
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keep your eye on the prize

Here are a couple shots, the first I was just watching the bird and it got the jump on me. The second and third I was watching it through the viewfinder and got a much better result!
Attached Images
     
05-20-2011, 04:52 PM   #45
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Thanks for the helpful advice. I just got back from the trip. got some pretty good shots. I will be processing them over the weekend. Rabbit and deer.

One deer, a button buck, crossed about 20 feet in front of me. My heat was pounding so hard I had trouble rolling the focus, but ended up with a couple of nice shots, I think.

The wild life refuge was flooded, so many of the deer had moved onto my dad's place. Over the span of 3 days I saw at least 9 (though half were a couple hundred yards off.) 4 of them came by within 15 minutes of each other! I'll post pics of the blind I was using. Very nice to have access to some great gear, including some very warm clothes since I hit MO right in the middle of blackberry winter.

slinky
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