American Avocet

Nearest Area
Bowdoin Wildlife Management Area

Solitude and peace are more important to me as a photographer than great opportunities in crowded parks where photographers line up and often capture the same images as that of many others. Lake Bowdoin is isolated and visitation is very low which is very attractive to me and the reason that I spend much of May and early June in North Central Montana. The quality of sunrise light at Bowdoin Wildlife Management Area is intense and reliable and varies from golden and crimson to purple and pink. During a trip in early May, I discovered a tiny island located just off shore where avocets would roost for the night. Each morning I was able to closely approach them before light and hide behind a cattail patch along the shore line of the Lake. I new from observation that they would navigate to a shallow area on the south shore and leave their roosts very soon after first touches the landscape. I was fortunate to experience unbelievable deeply reflecting light on the water as the avocets vacated their evening roost. They fly very close to the surface of the water which afforded me great opportunities to capture their silhouettes. Being the only person in the refuge of this size is a magical experience that one rarely finds these days. I basically had the entire wilderness area to myself for more than a weeks time. As an added benefit, I was able to relocate to the south end of the lake and photograph them mating and feeding in shallow seasonal pools for several hours while the light remained soft and beautiful.

Date Added
October 12, 2018

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