Picture of the month - December 2004

Autumn Wolf  -  Herbst-Wolf

Wolves are fascinating animals. The tough hierachical structure within the pack can be easily observed looking at the behaviour, e.g. gestures of humbleness such as clamping their tail between the hind legs. Especially during the feeding of wolves these interactions, including punishment of sub-ordinated animals extravagating, gets visible frequently. 

In wildlife parks, such as here in Wildpark Bad Mergentheim, where feeding is performed by custodians twice a day, you can just "sit and wait" for occasions to watch. Later, when the wolves low in rank have already collected all the tiny rests of food, the best chances occur to get pictures like this: Single, separated animals without hectic gestures can be sighted - sometimes even directing their yellowish eyes in direction of you and your camera. The right time to release the trigger ... good if you are well prepared, and have camera and tripod ready.

Even in full afternoon light it takes some tries to get a sharp image with the 2x converter on the 300mm lens. Mirror lock is not possible because of the fast reaction required, and mirror shake wastes quite some slide material. Don't save film here - you will regret it later on, I promise. Lucky if you already surf the digital wave.

This picture I like quite a bit due to the nice posture, the beautiful afternoon light and the autumn leaves. It was a phantastic day in Bad Mergentheim spent together with a good friend being fanatic photographer himself. It was likely the best day of the year - at least in photographic relevance (although I nearly forgot my camera backpack after exactly this picture).


Don't forget your equipment insurance,
your Mr. Mooseman !