The Weekly Photo – May 2, 2011

On April 26 I went out to photograph the newly blooming prairie crocuses that were popping up all over the wild spaces here in Cochrane, Alberta. I was busy with my Canon Rebel T2i and my Sigma 17-50mm f2.8 lens on extension tubes photographing the crocus below:

©Darwin Wiggett

Out of the corner of my eye I saw movement and looked behind me to see what I first thought was a dog coming over to visit me. A quick second glance told me this was not dog! A coyote was only 3 feet away from me! I grabbed the camera off the tipod and made this snapshot! You can see the Cochrane water treatment plant in the backround.

©Darwin Wiggett - A surprise guest! (shot at 21mm!)

The coyote was extremely brazen and then walked over to my f-stop photo bag and sniffed it.

©Darwin Wiggett - coming in for the snatch!

Right after I snapped the shot above the coyote made a dash for my camera bag and started hauling it away! Needless to say, I grabbed the bag and tugged it away from the coyote (hey, no one is taking my f-stop bag from me!).

The coyote then ran above me on the hill and looked off into the distance with enough time for me to take another photo using the pop-up fill flash on the Rebel.

©Darwin Wiggett - Coyote in Cochrane, Alberta

The coyote lost interest in my camera bag and slowly wandered down the hill and into the river valley. I was left dumbfounded by the encounter (someone must be feeding this coyote for it to be this forward with humans!).

Minutes later I saw an osprey take a large trout from the Bow River! It was a crazy day for wildlife encounters! I went back to making macro photographs but just could not believe what happened to me. BTW, the f-stop bag  (a Tilopa) withstood the attack by the coyote with no harm done to it!

©Darwin Wiggett

22 Responses to “The Weekly Photo – May 2, 2011”

  1. Marilyn Says:

    Wow! What an exciting encounter with the coyote!! Neat!


  2. Waw! I would have $&@! My pants! 🙂 amazing story!

  3. Weren’t you joking about taking photos of bears with a fisheye lens? Is this part of your work up training? You know if you didn’t keep 10 boxes of sweet and salty bars in your bag (isn’t it a Tilopa?), maybe this wouldn’t happen.

  4. That’s awesome! I’ll bet granola bars had something to do with this!. 😉

  5. First off, that Crocus image is stunning! I love how the center just glows.

    What an exciting (and somewhat scary) encounter with the coyote! You stayed so calm! The coyotes are getting closer and closer to our landscape and know that one day, I too, will have an encounter. I do hope mine goes as well as yours!

  6. Hi Darwin,

    Have you taken you Tilopa backpack on any flights flights yet? (domestic or international). I have been looking at getting one mainly to bring my camera gear hiking, but I also want to use it for travelling. The dimensions of the Tilopa are just slightly larger then the carry-on size limits for most major airlines. I’m just wondering if you or anyone else has had any problems with this.

  7. Hi Jay,

    I have yet to fly with this bag… I use it as my dayhiking camera/outdoor gear bag. I agree with you, I think it would be too big for ‘approved’ airline travel. Darwin

  8. I have the Loka. Haven’t flown with it yet, but I’ve flown with a Camelbak BFM which is much bigger, so I think the Loka would be fine.

  9. Excellent to have these close encounters, but a heads up that feeding them may lead to potentially more unpleasant incidents…

  10. i Darwin.
    Your great crocus photo caught my attention and then I noticed you used a Sigma 17-50.
    My husband and I were interested in purchasing a lens, with stabilization, in this range,
    We have looked at reviews for the Tamron 17-50 Canon 17-55 and the Sigma 17-50.
    The Canon 17-55 gets good reviews but the cost, even for used, has held us back.
    The Sigma price is very attractive.
    Can you tell us if your satisfied with the photo quality of the Sigma because the picture of the crocus would indicate that you are.
    Have you had any experience with the Canon and/or the Tamron?

  11. That coyote certainly knows a good thing! Beautiful crocus.

  12. Great story and image, Darwin! How were you able to focus with (with the water treatment plant in focus, essentially) extension tubes on? Did he give you time to take them off?

  13. I’ve had a close encounter with a curious coyote before, but nothing like your brazen friend! Your crocus capture is lovely. What can beat the color harmony of yellow and lavender/purple? It’s one of my favorites.

  14. Hendrik Says:

    Any plans on wide angle close up wildlife workshops? If so, sign me in 🙂

  15. Encounters like this is what I love about nature photography. First thing I thought of was those Nature Valley granola bars – seems like a few of us thought that 🙂 I assume Brando was at home. Love the coyote shots and the Crocus image is killer!

  16. Fine images Darwin! The crocus is very nice, and the coyote series is pure serendipity!

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