Calling Chukar in Snow on Antelope Island

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Bright winter day on snow-covered Antelope IslandBright winter day on snow-covered Antelope Island – Nikon D200, f11, 1/1000, ISO 400, +0.3 EV, Nikkor 18-200mm VR at 20mm, natural light

Five years ago today I spent the morning photographing birds, coyotes and scenery on snow-covered Antelope Island State Park, it was definitely cold so my hands got numb a few times but it was beautiful, the air was clean and the sunshine felt great. I absolutely love it when the island is covered in snow and because of that I think winter can be a great time to visit the island.

Chukar calling in the snow on a bright winter dayChukar calling in the snow on a bright winter day – Nikon D300, f7.1, 1/2000, ISO 640, +0.7 EV, Nikkor 200-400mm VR with 1.4x TC at 400mm, natural light

I always feel fortunate when I am able to photograph Chukars in the snow on the island because it helps to make them more visible than they are during other seasons of the year when they can easily blend into the habitat there.

This Chukar was near a small flock and it appeared to be the guard bird that was keeping an eye out for predators in the sky and on the ground while the other birds were foraging nearby. This bird called a few times while I photographed it.

Chukar calling on snow-covered Antelope IslandChukar calling on snow-covered Antelope Island – Nikon D300, f7.1, 1/2000, ISO 640, +0.7 EV, Nikkor 200-400mm VR with 1.4x TC at 400mm, natural light

Not long after I took this photo this Chukar saw or heard something that alarmed it which caused the bird to take off running and the rest of the flock followed suit. I never saw what alarmed the bird, being inside a mobile blind can be a pain that way because the roof obscures much of my view of the sky overhead.

I’m just happy I had a few minutes to photograph the Chukar in the snow.

Life is good.

Mia

7 Comments

  1. Elephants Child December 30, 2017 at 12:48 pm

    I am happy you were there too. Very happy. And I do love the beagle boys and am always glad to see them. Whatever the season.

  2. Pepe Forte December 30, 2017 at 11:42 am

    Cold and open and beautiful. What a landscape! Gorgeous shot of the chukers Mia. Love the balance you achieved between the vivid colors of the chukers against the snowy background. Thanks.

  3. April Olson December 30, 2017 at 11:26 am

    Beautiful photos, that was what I was hoping for yesterday at Antelope Island. Sadly it was gloom and haze and not many animals. I love the vistas and love to hike out to a nice view overlooking both sides of the island by myself and sit, eat lunch and just enjoy the now. Missed all that yesterday Even the Oquirrhs were barley visible
    .

  4. Ken Schneider December 30, 2017 at 8:26 am

    Beautiful image! I have seen only one Chukar in the wild,also in the snow atop Sanda Crest in New Mexico. Its provenance was unknown but we suspect that it was an escapee. A fox killed it after 3 days. I never got a photo.

  5. Cathy December 30, 2017 at 8:07 am

    I just want you to know that I really enjoy your photographs every single day. I am a photographer, and I love to photog birds on my hikes. Your photos are simply amazing, and you do an excellent job!

  6. Patty Chadwick one of my favorite birds December 30, 2017 at 7:47 am

    The beautiful bird really stands out against the snowy background! They are so beautiful anyway, but this makes their colors and feather patterns even more dramatic….love these images!!!

  7. Liz Cormack December 30, 2017 at 7:31 am

    Chukars are such beautiful birds. They really stand out against the snow. Wonderful.

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