Last November 22nd, 2022, I had the opportunity to photograph a beautiful Whitetail Buck at Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge in Oklahoma. With the deer and waterfowl hunts that had occurred there recently, I wasn’t expecting to see much wildlife near the auto tour road. But as I was driving through the southwest corner of the refuge, I spotted a mature 8-point Buck moving through the thick weeds and brush. He finally entered a small clearing, and I was able to snap a few photos before he disappeared back into the vegetation.

Whitetail Buck Standing Tall Near The Brush

An 8-point White-tailed Buck Standing Tall Near The Brush

This Buck was a magnificent specimen – his antlers were wide and heavy with 8 distinct points. Even though it was late November, this buck still had some mating on his mind. I could tell he was on high alert, most likely searching for Does that might be in estrus.

I feel fortunate to have encountered this Buck. As a wildlife photographer, I’ve had mixed luck photographing Whitetails this season. I’ve seen some Bucks chasing Does, but wasn’t able to get photos for various reasons – not enough light, too much fog, or they were simply too far away for a good shot. But on this crisp early fall day, the conditions were just right to capture this buck in all his glory before he wandered off.

Part of the thrill of wildlife photography is never knowing what animals you might encounter on any given day. I’m glad I didn’t give up and kept driving through the refuge, despite the recent hunts. It just goes to show that nature will always find a way to surprise you and provide special, fleeting moments like this.

Image Information:

  • Date: 11/22/22
  • Time: 10:03 AM
  • Camera: Canon EOS R7
  • Lens: Canon RF 800mm F11
  • ISO: 1600
  • Aperture: 11
  • Shutter: 1/2000
  • Exp. Comp.: 0
  • Lens (mm): 800
  • Program Mode: Manual