Steamboat Springs Crane Festival
The very air vibrates with the applause for this young photographer, Michael Forsberg.
Watching his presentation about photographing birds, I realized that I was thinking, "I must work on my new book!" Michael's enthusiasm is contagious and since I own his first book, "On Ancient Wings," I feel a kinship to him.
His work has appeared in such publications as the National Geographic, Audubon and National Wildlife. Part of the presentation was displaying the various blinds that he had used. In one of these, we saw the low (18 inches tall) blind with a narrow pad that he would crawl onto to manage the high magnification camera. The subject? A colony of burrowing owls. All was calm but then one of the owls (about eight inches tall) charged the hidden camera. Beak open, wings out, feathers ruffled and rage in its eyes. Wow!
Earlier we heard Rod Drewien, the expert on our Rocky Mountain Population of Greater Sandhill Cranes speak about the current conditions: The numbers are down. Dr. Drewien is the gentleman who invited me to be the "official" volunteer monitor for our cranes. How pleasant it was to talk to him in person, rather than on the phone.
And then a bit of a surprise. Last year Robert Storkowsky gave a report on the welfare of our cranes, and during the festival he and George Archibald (Inter-national Crane Foundation founder) made contact with each other. The result: Robert engaged in research in Mongolia. This is the home of the white-naped cranes that breed in northeast Mongolia as well as in China and Russia with wintering grounds in South Korea. The remainder continues on to the Japanese island of Kyushu where they rely heavily upon an artificial feeding station located outside the city of Izumi.
Robert mentioned that Mongolia is "open," meaning that, except for the major cities, you can go anywhere — just make your own road! And all creatures roam at will, both domesticated and wild. His program was a grand experience!blog comments powered by Disqus