Four-Years Ago (17-November-2007) — Colorado

Colorado Wildlife — Migrating Tundra Swans and Big Horn Sheep

I drove to Arapaho National Wildlife Refuge near Walden Colorado. It is a long drive, but the pass through Rocky Mountain National Park was still open. I knew it was late in the year and didn’t expect to see many migrating birds, but hoped to see some Pronghorn Elk or Moose. While driving through the refuge on the Auto Tour route, I saw eight large white birds across one of the lakes. I took some images, first with a 80-400 mm VR lens, and then with 200-400 f/4 VR lens. It was rather windy, so used the car to block the wind to minimize motion with the big lenses. Even on a tripod this was hard. It looks like these are Tundra Swans which the bird list for the wildlife refuge list as being rare (once every 2-5 years). I guess  I was lucky. I also didn’t see anyone else while visiting the reserve.

Tundra Swans. Arapaho National Wildlife Refuge. Image taken with a Nikon D2XS and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 400, 200 mm, f/8, 1/1600 sec). Raw image processed with Capture One Pro 6, Photoshop CS5, Nik Define, Nik Color Efex Pro 2. (David J Mathre)
Tundra Swans. Arapaho National Wildlife Refuge. Image taken with a Nikon D2XS and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 400, 200 mm, f/8, 1/1600 sec). Raw image processed with Capture One Pro 6, Photoshop CS5, Nik Define, Nik Color Efex Pro 2. (David J Mathre)
Tundra Swans. Arapaho National Wildlife Refuge. Image taken with a Nikon D2XS and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 400, 400 mm, f/8, 1/2000 sec). Raw image processed with Capture One Pro 6, Photoshop CS5, Nik Define, Nik Color Efex Pro 2. (David J Mathre)
Tundra Swans. Arapaho National Wildlife Refuge. Image taken with a Nikon D2XS and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens (ISO 400, 400 mm, f/8, 1/2000 sec). Raw image processed with Capture One Pro 6, Photoshop CS5, Nik Define, Nik Color Efex Pro 2. (David J Mathre)
Tundra Swans. Arapaho National Wildlife Refuge. Image taken with a Nikon D2XS and 80-400 mm VR lens (ISO 100, 400 mm, f/5.6, 1/640 sec). Raw image processed with Capture One Pro 6, Photoshop CS5, Nik Define, Nik Color Efex Pro 2. (David J Mathre)
Tundra Swans. Arapaho National Wildlife Refuge. Image taken with a Nikon D2XS and 80-400 mm VR lens (ISO 100, 400 mm, f/5.6, 1/640 sec). Raw image processed with Capture One Pro 6, Photoshop CS5, Nik Define, Nik Color Efex Pro 2. (David J Mathre)
Tundra Swans. Arapaho National Wildlife Refuge. Image taken with a Nikon D2XS and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens + TCE-II 20 teleconverter (ISO 400, 800 mm, f/8, 1/640 sec). Raw image processed with Capture One Pro 6, Photoshop CS5, Nik Define, Nik Color Efex Pro 2. (David J Mathre)
Tundra Swans. Arapaho National Wildlife Refuge. Image taken with a Nikon D2XS and 200-400 mm f/4 VR lens + TCE-II 20 teleconverter (ISO 400, 800 mm, f/8, 1/640 sec). Raw image processed with Capture One Pro 6, Photoshop CS5, Nik Define, Nik Color Efex Pro 2. (David J Mathre)

While returning from the reserve I came upon several Big Horn Sheep along Colorado Highway 14.

Big Horn Ram Huddle. Along Colorado 14 near Sheridan in Roosevelt National Forest. Image taken with a Nikon D2xs and 200-400 mm lens (ISO 100, 400 mm, f/5.6, 1/125 sec). (David J Mathre)
Big Horn Ram Huddle. Along Colorado 14 near Sheridan in Roosevelt National Forest. Image taken with a Nikon D2xs and 200-400 mm lens (ISO 100, 400 mm, f/5.6, 1/125 sec). (David J Mathre)

 

Author: David Mathre

I am a scientist by training (Eckerd College, BSc; Caltech, Ph.D.). I worked for 27 years as a Chemist in the Pharmaceutical Industry developing processes to manufacture medicines for human and animal health. I now spend my time as a photographer and world traveler. My interests in photography include the natural world, wildlife, landscapes, skyscapes, and seascapes. I have traveled to over 50 countries over the last 10 years, often on Semester at Sea voyages. While at home in New Jersey, I spend time on a home renovation project and expanding my wildflower garden/meadow.

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