Thursday, August 4, 2011


A young osprey tests it's wings against a firm breeze down at the Old Georgia Pacific lot on the Kalamazoo River.

He also tests the patience of a sibling when he comes down on their head with razor sharp talons.


These guys are precisely why I haven't been blogging as of late. I've been busy documenting the osprey for the past couple weeks, in preparation for a short documentary that will eventually broadcast locally, and eventually makes it's way online. I'll definitely keep you posted.

It's been quite a while since I've captured wildlife with "moving pictures"--not to mention sound--and it's a thrill to be back at it. It's also a magnified challenge compared to photography and the pursuit of a single image. Where as a picture's "worth a thousand words", moving pictures are like novels by comparison. Not that I'm creating a feature length documentary (I suspect this video will be a half hour long) but the complexity in weaving a story, over time, with footage, interviews, sounds, narration, and eventually music, requires way more focus and commitment than capturing single images. Ah, but what a treat.

These birds are in such a unique environment, down there at the intersection of industry, wilderness, traffic, the river, the PCB's, the politics, and of course, the multitudes of people drawn to the front gate to watch the Osprey and their young. And I believe the video will capture this unique milieu - with of course, a great deal of my own perception and flare thrown into the mix.

Perhaps my favorite dimension to this story are the people and their love of the birds. It's amazing how wildlife can bring people together, from so many different backgrounds, and generate so much good will.

There is of course a great measure of hope surrounding their nest, perched atop a telephone pole in the old Georgia Pacific lot. What exactly their presence represents, from an ecological/environmental standpoint, is yet to be determined. That's what I hope to uncover in the documentary.

Time to turn to the scientists and the experts. Sometimes they can tell us what wildlife simply can't.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for this moment of seeing these young birds spreading their wings in the wind. How to ever get the courage to actually jump? And how I hope the local Peregrines are otherwise occupied the day these young Osprey launch into the air. Osprey eat fish, Peregrines eat birds! Sometimes Mother Nature can play hardball.