Wildopeneye is focusing on filming again! I think that that would please Andy. Kimmie and I have been filming in Tensas River National Wildlife Refuge and D’Arbonne National Wildlife Refuge for the Union Museum of History and Art’s forthcoming wildlife exhibition. Both National Wildlife refuges are lovely in the autumn, especially when the leaves are turning nicely and not just dropping off the tree in wind and rain.
2017 is a great year for rich yellows and oranges, perhaps because we’ve had little rain and some nice cool nights and bright sunny days. This is also perfect weather for exploratory landscape photography and wildlife filming. I’ll use Cyberlink’s Movie editing software to edit the film.
We’ve been blessed with nice sightings and images of Louisiana Black Bear Ursus americanus luteolus, Wild Turkeys Meleagris galloparvo, Barred Owl Strix varia, Nine-banded Armadillo Dasypus novemcinctus, White-tailed Deer Odocolleus virginianus, flocks of Duck and feral hogs.
For good reasons I’m reserving our best stuff for the museum exhibition, but we can say at this stage that we have some good footage in the can already and the film will provide a nice taste of some of Louisiana’s fantastic wildlife.
Tensas is great for safari driving and birding from the car and on foot. This season we’ve watched the water level drop away as it has been rather dry, but we’ve seen American alligators Alligator mississippiensis in some of the various ponds and lakes in the reserve.
On one memorable occasion in October, Kimmie looked up into a tree in search of birds and saw a large bear’s face looking back at her! A delightful and unforgettable experience. You never know quite what you’ll see, but you can count on seeing some interesting wildlife.
I’m still getting used to the Pentax K1 and Sigma 70-300 mm APO macro zoom combination. It’s very handy to be able to use the movable Live-view screen when shooting images of wildlife in the road from in the car and when photographing scenes that include the sun. In the crop mode the zoom attains the equivalent of 460mm in 35mm telephoto range. It is dangerous to view the sun directly with a DSLR camera, but the live-view screen spares risk of eye damage. Also shots through the windscreen tend to be a bit soft and lack contrast. If you can hold the camera out of the window and frame your beast/s through the live view screen that is very handy!
We saw a family sounder of five feral swine cross the road.