This is what we came for – tigers, tigers and more tigers! Day 2 produced four different tigers and allowed us a fantastic three hours in the company of these magnificent cats! To make it even more special, the first tiger we saw stalked and chased a spotted deer, nearly catching it. All this action was right in front of us and out in the open, so the cameras were going crazy. The (nearly two year old) cubs we saw in the afternoon were equally obliging for the cameras, playing in the water and then with each other. Not a bad day at all…
After a (very) quick trip on the famous bullet train, we made our way to photograph some of the smartest monkeys cold weather has seen. This famous troop of monkeys have worked out the easy way to see out the cold of winter – by taking a hot bath! There is a natural hot spring that runs through the reserve, and every morning, these monkeys make their way up to the spring, and climb in for a bit of rest and relaxation. The spin of of this behaviour, is some very cool photographic opportunities!
The day kicked off with us boarding an ice-breaker boat en route to see some very cool eagles. We had an incredible two and a half hours with the magnificent stellar sea eagles, white-tailed eagles and hundreds of gulls that had pretty much surrounded the boat. It was an amazing photographic experience having so much choice, with so much action happening almost constantly. Disembarking, we had a relaxed day, and caught up on some rest and quick image processing, before heading out for a real treat. We tried our luck attempting to photograph a very rare bird, the Blackiston’s fish owl. We were rewarded for our (rather chilly) efforts with two visits by the magnificent bird, and even better, we managed to get some images!
Before travelling up to our next stop, we spent the morning back at the river where the red crowned cranes sleep and, with the conditions being even better than before, made for a brilliant morning of photography! Things got even better when a pair of red foxes ran out right in front of the birds, and started mating, much to the amusement of one of the cranes which came up to the bank to have a look at all the commotion. After the action from the river came to an end, we spent a very productive hour back at the crane sanctuary, where some smaller birds found their way into the cameras viewfinders, adding to our species list, as well as the prized cranes.