Wichita Mountains National Wildlife Refuge, OK

Things have really been busy around here lately with some travel to Oklahoma to see my brother and his family, plus we spent a couple of days at the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge photographing landscapes, lizards, buffalo, elk, deer and birds.  Be sure and sign up for my Spring in the Wichita Mountains Photography Workshop (May 9-12, 2015) where we will focus on wildlife and landscape photography.  My heart considers this place my home in many ways because this is where I first started photographing with a Canon AE-1 with a broken meter and the Sunny f/16 rule at my disposal.  A few rolls of Kodak Ektachrome 64 and a nice bull buffalo was my beginning.  While equipment and technology may have changed, the knowledge and skills required to get some outstanding shots have not.

This is one of the oldest refuges established by Theodore Roosevelt in 1901.  Buffalo, elk, prairie dogs, and turkey were reintroduced and this refuge is a photographer’s dream.  Beautiful granite outcrops, lichen covered granite mountains, spectacular sunsets and many lakes all provide tons of landscape photography opportunities.  If you can’t find something special to photograph here, you aren’t looking!

Here are a few of my favorites from the past few days:

 

Caddo Lake

Caddo Lake

Eastern Collared Lizard

Eastern Collared Lizard

Elk in Velvet

Elk in Velvet

Granite Outcrop

Granite Outcrop

Lost Lake

Lost Lake

Quanah Parker Lake

Quanah Parker Lake

Texas Longhorns

Texas Longhorns

Wild Turkey

Wild Turkey

I am very excited about this workshop as I have spent many years visiting this place due to the variety of wildlife and scenic landscapes.

Birthday Shooting at Hornsby Bend

Melanistic Red-Eared Sliders

Melanistic Red-Eared Sliders

Blue Dasher Male

Blue Dasher
Male

Roseate Skimmer Older Female

Roseate Skimmer
Older Female

For my birthday on Wednesday, I decided to go photograph at Hornsby Bend in Austin since I hadn’t had the opportunity to photograph many dragonflies lately.  While species diversity were down and the cooler temperatures got things off to a later start, I still found a few nice subjects.  The melanistic Red-Eared Sliders are my favorite shot of the day, although I wish I had used a higher f/stop so I could have increased my depth-of-field a bit.  If you are in the Austin area, Hornsby is a great place to photograph all kinds of critters.