Moose Monday

Moose Monday was productive! This is one of two large bulls that I photographed - it seemed he was in the mood for love while the cow definitely was not.

On another note, I will be sharing the details for my 2020 Iceland Photo Tour in the coming days, so stay tuned for that...

Thank you for following along,

Colin


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Moose Eating Fireweed

Good morning and Happy Monday out there, friends! I did some guiding over the weekend for a nice couple from Texas. They wanted to photograph wildlife and hadn't seen a moose yet, so our mission was to find Alaska's pervasive ungulate and I can say with confidence that my clients were quite thrilled with what we found, as was I…

Have a great week and thank you for following along!


Colin


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Moose Calves

Well, salmon fishing wasn't great and the river was far too crowded for my likes but on the other hand, the moose photography was very productive! I spent over an hour with these twins and their mother near Cooper Landing. As much as I was hoping for fresh salmon, I still have time to fill my freezer before summer's end while these moose calves only stay small and cute for a short time.

Colin


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Moose Monday

Hello everyone. It's Moose Monday!

This guy has been making a splash in local ponds recently. He is one of at least 3 bulls that I've seen in the area in the past few weeks. As their diet changes in the spring, so does the shape and consistency of their droppings and for this reason, is often mistaken for bear scat, which there is also an abundance of right now.

Colin


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More Moose on the Road...

Following up on my post from two days ago regarding moose on the roadways, this morning was another reminder when a cow with two newborn calves were trying to cross the Eagle River Road. The calves either weren't able or weren't willing to make it over the guardrail, so mom kept going back to try convince them to follow her. Cars were stopped for several minutes in both directions until two vehicles pushed ahead, forcing the cow to step back over the guardrail to be with her calves, only to return to the road after they passed.

Before I left she had stepped off the road to be closer to her calves, so I was able to pass by without causing them to retreat. I understand being in a hurry, but unless it's an emergency, please allow wildlife to safely cross the roadways, especially the newborns.

Thank you and have a great weekend!

Colin


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Local Bull Moose

This is one of 3 large bull moose that we've seen around the Nature Center recently. Soon their antlers will stop growing, the velvet covering will be shed, and their temperament will be less friendly when the rut (mating season) begins. Rut-crazed bulls take no prisoners when it comes to charming a potential mate and discouraging any perceived competition, which can include other bulls, people, even cars and trains. Rivals are usually met with a chase and possible head-on collision from their massive antlers, so keep a heads-up approach when hiking and maybe see if your auto insurance has a rider policy for rutting moose!

Colin

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Mother's Day Print Sale

Hello and Happy May Day, friends! Mother’s Day is soon approaching and it’s not too late to order Mom special prints for her special day. I still have a few signed & numbered original artist proofs of Mother’s Love (cow moose & twin calves) and Mother’s Day Aurora (taken May 8, 2016) available for $75 each, or get the pair for $125 AND I will include a 2019 Aurora Borealis calendar as well – my photo is on the month of March, which I will sign for you, although it was also taken on Mother’s Day, May 8, 2016. Order today and they will be in the mail tomorrow! Follow the link to purchase: http://www.colintyler.com/online-store/combined-limited-first-edition-ten-signed-and-numbered-12x18-prints

Cheers,

Colin

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Spring Bull Moose

 Another sure sign of spring - bull moose are sprouting new antlers. Look closely in front of the ears and you will see the start of a new rack. During summer months, bull moose focus their energy on antler development, which can grow up to an inch per day. A fully developed set of antlers can end up weighing more than 50 pounds and span 6 feet in width. Photo taken recently at the Eagle River Nature Center. 

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Browsing Around Anchorage

“Can I help you?”

“No thanks, I’m just browsing.”

Taken during a heavy snowfall in Anchorage yesterday. Moose are common in residential and urban areas throughout Alaska, where they are often observed feeding, resting, sometimes even birthing calves. They are also famous for consistently ignoring traffic signs, so “Give them a brake” as the saying goes and if you don’t like the way they roam, then stay off the sidewalks.

Colin

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Worth the Wait

I waited nearly 4 hours for this moment today. This cow moose has twin calves. After a bit of browsing this morning, they bedded down for a few hours in some tall grass and brush, mostly out of sight. I'd considered throwing in the towel; I was growing hungry and have a number of tasks to accomplish today but when you've got subjects like these with soft, overcast light, sometimes you have to wait in hopes that patience eventually pays off.

In time for Mothers' Day, new images added to my online store...

Well, it seems this pair of swans has left the valley and moved on to their summer nesting grounds. They were here for an entire month this spring, twice as long as the previous two years. I always look forward to their return and the beautiful opportunities they present; this year being no exception.

Just in time for Mothers' Day, I've added some recent photos (both swans and moose) to my online store. These images would look great on metal and they are available on canvas and high-gloss photo paper as well. Feel free to share!

Cheers,

Colin

Link to online store...

Moose, Swans, and Moon

Just because the sun goes down doesn’t mean the light is gone. A few nights back I was photographing the swans at sunset when a moose walked onto the scene. I was hoping that the swans and the moose would line up in the frame but that seemed like I was asking for the moon when, lo and behold, the moon showed up too.

I stuck around until the light was too low to continue shooting, watching them feed together - their faces just inches apart at times, possibly foraging the same aquatic vegetation. It made me think, this interspecies harmony could be a lesson for mankind.

Happy Monday, everybody. Have a great week and be peaceful to one another.

Colin

March Sunset

The sun set at 8:23 pm this evening in Eagle River Valley, Alaska. We've recently surpassed 12 hours of total daylight, gaining more than 7 hours since the winter solstice. I wasn't the only one out enjoying the last bit of alpenglow on the mountains, this bull moose was feeding in the creek and already sporting a new set of antlers, a sure sign of spring!

Injured Moose

I went out skiing with my camera gear earlier today, hoping to catch a colorful morning sky. On they way to my favorite location, I came upon a cow moose browsing next to the trail. Not wanting to startle her by passing by closely or risk being charged, I skied into the trees and made a wide arc, coming back out further up the trail where I could get some photos of her. A few minutes later, another moose stepped out onto the trail and joined her. I could see that they wanted to walk the trail past me, so I stepped behind a stand of trees, allowing them to pass by safely. After they walked past, I noticed the first moose had an injured hind leg. There wasn’t an open wound but the leg was obviously deformed, probably from an injury that she acquired long ago, possibly caused by a bear. She was limping along and I can only imagine that traveling through deep snow must be very challenging for her. The experience served as a reminder that humans need to give wildlife ample space to go about their routine, for our safety and theirs. If the moose had been frightened and run off into the woods to avoid me, she would have exerted a lot of energy, a situation that could prove fatal in the dead of winter. As a wildlife photographer, the welfare of your subject should always be the top priority.

Moose Facts

Two fun moose facts for you: 

1. Moose have no upper front teeth. They have eight sharp incisors for cutting and molars & premolars for grinding their food. 

2. It was previously believed that moose would strip and eat the bark of aspen trees only out of desperation in winter months when food was scarce. After further research, it turns out the under layer may hold some nutritional value, as this bull is demonstrating here. 

Thankfully, the film crew was able to capture this today for their documentary assignment. Another great day on the job!

Sparring Bulls

Day 2, Crow Pass Trail with Tyler Howie. Without time for a proper breakfast, we grabbed handfuls of mixed nuts and hit the trail, trying stay ahead of the looming rainclouds that were billowing over the pass and heading our direction. After hiking all day and stopping periodically to satiate on ripe blueberries, we reached the point where we were to cross Eagle River only to be greeted by these two sparring bull moose, exactly where we needed to be. After observing and photographing them, they crossed the river and chose to hang out on the opposite bank, again right where we needed to cross. With darkness looming, they wandered off after a short while and we forded the river. While warming our feet from the ice-cold glacier water and sipping a cup of hot tea, the two bulls returned and drove us out of their turf. Still in my water shoes, we threw on our packs, grabbed everything that was scattered on the ground and hightailed it down the trail.

 

 

 

 

Monday's Moose Fact

 Moose antlers are 95% grown by the first of August, which stands to reason since they will soon be shedding the velvet tissue layer that nourishes them as they grow throughout spring and summer. In other words, this guy isn't going to get much bigger this time around. He should drop these antlers in mid-to-late winter and will perhaps be sporting more impressive headgear at this time next year. 

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