June 2018 was a memorable month for me as a wildlife photographer. I had many exciting adventures and stunning encounters, but one particular moment stands out vividly in my mind: the mesmerizing sight of a Copperhead Snake gracefully slithering across the asphalt section of the tour road at the Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge in Oklahoma.
I was driving down the tour road, exploring the refuge, when I saw a subtle movement in the distance. I stopped my truck and got out to take a closer look. I was carrying my trusty Canon EOS 7D Mark II camera and the versatile Canon EF 100–400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II lens, so I was prepared to capture the moment.
I carefully positioned myself and adjusted my camera settings. I chose aperture priority mode (AV) and set the shutter speed to 1/160 of a second, the aperture to f/8, and the ISO to 1000.
I peered through the viewfinder and saw the intricate patterns on the Copperhead Snake’s scales. Its elegant body, adorned with rich, earthy tones, effortlessly glided across the road, seamlessly blending with its surroundings.
Copperhead Snakes are native to the eastern and central regions of the United States. They are venomous creatures, but they are generally non-aggressive and prefer to retreat when confronted by humans. I was fortunate to witness this firsthand during my encounter.
I watched the Copperhead Snake for a few minutes before it slithered off into the underbrush. I was grateful for the opportunity to see such a beautiful and fascinating creature up close. It was a moment I will never forget.