Near Sackets Harbor, upstate NY, USA. November 2010
My family and I made a follow up visit to a friend’s ranch whom is a Master Falconer. Being so close to these amazing Birds of Prey was exhilarating!
‘GIZMO’ is extremely rare in North America. Only 5 are known to be in captivity and they are not indigenous to the continent. National Geographic payed a visit recently, as there are two here at this ranch. They are nocturnal hunters and very reclusive.
What an amazing treat for me to photograph, only 5 minutes from my home. Every time Gizmo was petted, he made this little cooing sound. Very cute. The Master Falconer, Rick, raised this BOP from an egg. He recalls during the winter while incubating, the electricity at the ranch went out. Rick said he placed the egg under his armpit to keep him warm. They have a wonderful bond and I saw Gizmo using his beak to groom Rick’s hair while I was there for this shoot.
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Nikon AF-S Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8G ED
1/60s, f/2.9, ISO 200, 24mm
Handheld, natural light, Cir-pol filter.