Portraits of a Coyote

A Noble Beast - Coyote PortraitA Noble Beast – Coyote Portrait – Nikon D300, f5.6, 1/2000, ISO 640, +1.0 EV, Nikkor 200-400mm VR with 1.4x TC at 400mm, natural light, not baited or called in

These Coyote portraits were created yesterday morning after finding the Coyote hunting voles along the causeway to Antelope Island State Park. I was so close to the Coyote that I could not fit the entire Coyote into the frame and since I didn’t feel like I had time to take off my teleconverter I opted to zoom in and take portraits of the Coyote.

Coyote PortraitCoyote Portrait – Nikon D300, f7.1, 1/1600, ISO 640, +0.3 EV, Nikkor 200-400mm VR with 1.4x TC at 400mm, natural light, not baited or called in

I felt hurried because there was traffic on the causeway, a bicyclist and truck heading west to the island,  the bicyclist zoomed by without seeing the Coyote just a few feet from the side of the road and the truck didn’t even slow down. I had thought the Coyote might move away but it stood its ground and continued to hunt.

There are times when my subjects do get too close for me to fit their whole bodies into the frame with my gear and quite often I will decide to take portraits instead of full body shots. I enjoy portraits though because they give me a sense of closeness and intimacy with my subjects.


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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 to pursue my passion for photographing birds.


  1. WONDERFUL!!! make me think of a plains style drum I made… It was not my first drum so it should have gone smoothly…but it didn’t. Nothing’s went easy or right. As a result, when it was finished, I painted a coyote on it, much like the ones you posted…It had a great sound, but EVERY TIME I used it, things went wrong…nothing big, just very annoying…like misplaced keys, etc. Now I keep it on a shelf, where it “smiles” slyly down at me…Coyotes are not called Iktomi (trickster/teacher) for nothing!

  2. Excellent head shots. Very nice light and isolation from the background.

  3. Your portrait shots are fantastic Mia, seeing fine detail is what I love most about wildlife photography and your shots are always a delight. The coyote is so sharp and vibrant I can almost feel his warm breath.

  4. Grace Dunklee Cohen

    No apologies needed here, Mia – these are beautiful shots – Thank you for sharing!

  5. Close-ups are often more interesting, although I also like to see the whole animal and usually shoot that way. But I do find the first profile shot to be very good.

  6. Amazing. Thank you. Lots.

  7. These portraits are perfect tributes to this magnificent animal. Love ‘em!

  8. I love shots like those. I find it hard to NOT back out & get the whole animal, but I LOVE the close ups. I just need to resist the urge and stay in tight. It’s a real treat to see a coyote that closely. Pretty amazing animals.

  9. Beautiful portraits, Mia!

  10. Those are lovely portraits of a canine that I admire but that does still give me the creeps (just me with small dogs in the country is all). :)

  11. Wonderful portraits Mia !

  12. Amazing!! I love the portraits!
    Well done, Mia!

  13. I love it!

  14. So striking Mia! A beautiful portrait of a beautiful animal!

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