A Photographer’s Mystery Solved: The Buck’s Alarm Revealed

This is part two of “What Alarmed the Buck at Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge?

I knew something had to be in the weeds between me and this spike white-tailed buck. I kept searching but couldn’t see anything in the direction the buck was looking. I began looking in different areas in case this was something the buck had smelled and couldn’t figure where it was coming from. Suddenly a coyote raised up from the weeds. I think the buck and I located it at the same time.

Coyote And Spike Buck
Coyote And Spike Buck

The coyote never made an aggressive move toward the buck. It actually groomed and scratched itself while watching the buck. The buck left the field away from the coyote and I decided to try and stalk closer to the coyote while it was being distracted by the buck leaving the field. I still had the wind in my favor and also the tall weeds for cover.

I slowly and methodically began stalking towards the preoccupied coyote, using the cover of the tall grass and my wind advantage to conceal my approach. I managed to get within 40 yards or so before a loud cracking noise emanated from the trees behind me, causing me to freeze in place.

Coyote Sitting And Looking Up
Coyote Sitting And Looking Up

The coyote’s attention shifted upwards to the sky, searching for the source of the disruption. I dared not move a muscle, worried any slight motion would betray my presence and position. After a few tense moments staring skyward, the coyote ultimately decided to abandon its post, sauntering off to my right without seeming to spot me.

Coyote Looking The Direction It Was Headed
Coyote Looking The Direction It Was Headed

I breathed a sigh of relief. Thanks to advancements in silent mirrorless camera technology, I was able to capture these up-close images of the coyote completely undetected. Just another example of how the right gear can make all the difference in wildlife photography!

Coyote Checking Behind Itself
Coyote Checking Behind Itself

The encounter left me with both exhilarating and reflective emotions. Exhilarated to have witnessed and documented this rarely seen interplay between two wild species. But also thoughtful on the fragility of their existence, and my own role as an observer. I feel privileged to capture these fleeting moments of wild lives, and aim to do so respectfully.

Image Information (Last Image):

  • Date: 11/3/23
  • Time: 8:52 AM
  • Camera: Canon EOS R7
  • Lens: EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM
  • ISO: 320
  • Aperture: 5.6
  • Shutter: 1/1250
  • Exp. Comp.: 0
  • Lens (mm): 400
  • Program Mode: Manual

2 thoughts on “A Photographer’s Mystery Solved: The Buck’s Alarm Revealed”

  1. Great post Steve, I can just imagine having to be really careful to not make any noise so as to capture photo’s of these lovely animals. I love animals, they seem to have their own special expressions such as, ears straight up when they are alert, also slowly creeping or even crawling so as to be as silent as possible in trying to catch their own prey. I watch quite a few National Geographic programs and my fav are about Elephants and Chimps, the Chimps especially because they can be so comical . Animals are more clever than we give them credit for don’t you think. ?

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