Luck easy to find at Quivira

We’ve all heard the old addage of “better to be lucky than to be good.”

So it was Tuesday afternoon when I drove to the Quivira National Wildlife Refuge, camera and telephoto lens on my lap. Winds were too high for sitting in a treestand. Once on the refuge usually plentiful deer were very few and very far between.

blog111210whoopers_mp0002So that found me driving Ol’ Red around the Wildlife Drive about an hour before sunset. Because of drought the Big Salt Marsh was very low and nearly void of waterfowl.

Because it was low hundreds of dead carp littered the thin water and shore. Because of the heavy south winds many carp were lying in the shallows at the marsh’s north end.

And there I found two adult whooping cranes gorging themselves on the bloated fish within 50 yards of the drive.

Often a very shy species these two whoopers were real hams for the camera. And since it was clear evening a true Kansas sunset made for some nice silhouette photography.

You can click here to see a photo gallery of the birds.

And had the winds not blown I’d have been hunting. Had deer been active I may not have made it to the Wildlife Drive in time to find the feeding whoopers.

I got lucky, but for outdoors photography that’s very easily done at Quivira.