Sunday, September 22, 2013

Brown and Red

As usual through this year I have spent some time photographing Brown Hares. There are two main reasons for this, one being that they are always great fun to photograph and secondly the hare site is close to home which allows me to pop in to undertake short evening sessions. The photographs in this post have mostly been taken in the evening when the light has been low, as you can tell by the size of the hares' pupils in some of the images,  and on these occasions the superb high ISO performance and autofocus capabilities of the Canon 1DX has really paid dividends.

A hare in full flight. These animals can hit about 40 mph at full speed. This one is being chased by another which is just out of frame.

For the next photograph a rather unusual setting for some hares in woodland by the edge of the field. You often see hares in pairs with a male guarding the female, having won her affections, from the attentions of other males.
A hare sat amongst some dandelion and bluebells, catching the last rays, just as the sun is about to disappear below the horizon.
During one stage in the late spring there were large numbers of dandelion around that had gone to seed. The hares spend a good deal of time targeting them as part of their diet and always eat their way down the stem from the bottom.
Another hare in flight. The speed that they can turn at full speed is  amazing and makes for some tricky tracking with the camera sometimes.
Of course some of the best moments are when you occasionally get a hare running straight towards you and it just keeps getting larger and larger in the camera view until you can no longer fit it in frame.
My favourite time with hares though is when you are lying down next to them at very close range. From this perspective with some careful position and an open lens the grass can be rendered in a green mist by the shallow depth of field.
Of course the other advantage of the evening sessions is that occasionally you are rewarded with a bonus and some luck. As I was driving down the road something caught the corner of my eye and it took a few moments to register what I had seen. I reversed back up and there,  sat relaxed  in the open, was one of the most beautiful vixen I have seen in some soft evening light. She just sat there staring straight at me through those soft amber eyes, before deciding it was too much effort on a summer's evening and lay down to take in the last of the day's warmth and light. Just a magical encounter.


Charlotte said...

Gorgeous shots.

Adirondackcountrygal said...

Wonderful! I enjoyed these photos!

The happy wanderer. said...

Looks like a great evening out. It's fun to see the hares but that upright shot of the fox is just beautiful (even if I don't usually like foxes because of the damage they do in Australia.)

Robin Lamb said...

Rich, what wonderful shots!

Paul Sorrell said...

These are just magical, Rich. I love the hare with the dandelion. Your photography always enriches my day!

Katie said...

Brilliant shots!

biobabbler said...

Jeeze--what a DELIGHTFUL virtual tour of that field.

Our rabbits def. have longer ears, here (it's probably a LOT hotter), but I am equally fascinated by them. I like when I can only see 2 ears peeking out of the grass, alternatively swiveling or flopping over. =) Or notice one sitting under the shade of a shrub in the heat of the day, just hanging out.

And a nice portrait of a creature that encourages rabbits to be so fast. =) Lovely lady!

Rich Steel said...

Many thanks for all you comments which are appreciated.




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