Chukars on Antelope Island State Park

Chukar warming up on the rocksChukar warming up on the rocks – Nikon D300, f9, 1/640, ISO 500, +0.7 EV, Nikkor 200-400mm VR with 1.4x TC at 400mm, natural light, not baited or called in

After seeing few Chukars on Antelope Island State Park over the winter it is a delight to see them perching on rocks, preening, calling and warming up in the first rays of sunlight on the island again.

Preening ChukarPreening Chukar – Nikon D300, f8, 1/500, ISO 320, +0.3 EV, Nikkor 200-400mm VR with 1.4x TC at 400mm, natural light, not baited or called in

Chukars aren’t native to North America but they have made Antelope Island their home and can be found this time of the year by following the kakakakakakakachukAR chuKAR chuKAR sound near the marina, the visitor center, the trailhead to Frary Peak and other rocky locations around the island. The Chukars are used to the human visitors on the island and it is relatively easy to photograph them by using a vehicle as a mobile blind. Getting out and photographing them on foot… not so easy.

A Chukar with the Great Salt Lake in the backgroundA Chukar with the Great Salt Lake in the background – Nikon D300, f8, 1/500, ISO 320, +0.3 EV, Nikkor 200-400mm VR with 1.4x TC at 400mm, natural light, not baited or called in

The first time I visited Antelope Island State Park in 2008 the Chukars amused and delighted me and though I had few opportunities to photograph them that day in my heart I knew I wanted to have the chance to photograph them more. My move to Utah certainly has provided me with those opportunities and I now have thousands of images of these rock-hopping upland game birds!

Mia

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About Mia McPherson

I am a nature lover, wildlife watcher and a bird photographer. I first become serious about bird photography when I moved to Florida in 2004 and it wasn’t long before I was hooked (addicted is more like it). My move to the Salt Lake area of Utah was a great opportunity to continue observing their behavior and photographing birds. My approach is to photograph the birds without disturbing their natural behavior. I don't bait, use set ups or call them in. I use Nikon gear and has multiple camera bodies and lenses.

7 Comments

  1. Wow!!! You actually caught that bird in the first image just before he exploded! Seems kind of cruel to inflate them…..

  2. Oh my! What a birdie! And beautiful shot :)

  3. For some reason I have a particular soft spot for these birds which I will probably never see for myself. So thank you Mia, you have brightened my morning.

  4. Gorgeous shots of a gorgeous bird. Thanks, Mia.

  5. I always smile and chuckle when I see these birds! Your photographs are prfect and elicit the same warm feelings andsounds for me! Thanks!

  6. Wonderful photos, Mia. They are very striking. I listened to them as well – there’s no mistaking all that clucking!

  7. Beautiful shots, Mia. This is the first time I’ve seen pix of Chukars. They are really lovely birds with beautiful marking on their feather coats!

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