Category Archives: naturalist


_dsc9410TAKING OUT THE TRASH  A female northern flicker bursts out of her nesting cavity with a fecal sack.

A pair of beautiful northern flickers has again taken up residence in our big back yard to raise a new generation.  Their distinct repertoire of territorial calls and hammering adds a welcome touch of wilderness.  These yellow hammers are perhaps the most striking birds of the northern boreal forest. As they dart about their forest territory flashing their brilliant feathers of gold I am unable to resist the temptation. I simply must try to capture some of their uncommon beauty with my cameras. Continue reading


fred rungi-11-4Fred Rungee at his cabin in September 2011.

Fred Rungee, everyone’s favorite mountain man in these parts, passed away on March 27, 2015 after spending more than 70 years in the Alaskan wilderness. He was ninety-three.  After retiring from the BLM as a fire management officer, he moved to a remote valley near Slana, Alaska and built a cabin.  His cabin,  “a short two and a half mile hike up the creek and then another half mile of side-hilling along the lake”,  kept Fred fit and ever young at heart.

carlson lake-1Fred’s beloved Lake in winter. He loved the solitude of those long winter months.

fred rungi-11-9Fred’s’ cabin, perched on a bench of bedrock overlooking a wilderness lake, is bear-proof and beautiful.

fred rungi-11-7One of Fred’s’ final days at his wilderness cabin.

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The old cross-cut saw kept the bears out of a small outbuilding.

Fred’s bear story.  To listen to the audio clip, click on left side of the bar. Volume on right side.

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Fred loved his gray jays.

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Walking the trail near his cabin.

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“Sit down and have something to eat.”  Guests were always welcomed with a bite to eat. Living mostly out of tins of food, Fred claimed to have “traveled several miles” around the tops of those tin cans with a can opener.

Farewell Fred.



Kids find fun in the simple things.  Seaweed catches the curiosity of a three year old while a group of big Stellar’s sea lions snooze at low tide.  Kids offer the photographer a great opportunity to hone their craft.  Photographing kids require all the skill and attention to detail as any other subject.  Pay attention to back ground, foreground and be sure to avoid distracting elements that can ruin a good photo.  Be ready for those wonderful moments when kids are just being kids.




grandaughterCuriosity, pure and simple, the kind my two year old grandaughter is full of, is an essential element for the creative photo naturalist


Welcome to my new blog, THE PHOTO NATURALIST. I hope to share what little I have learned from forty years as a professional wildlife photographer.

Nature photography is nothing new, it’s been around for onehundred and sixty five years. George Eastman’s camera was manufactured in 1888. Pre-loaded with one hundred exposures, the Kodak Brownie had to be returned to the factory for processing and reloading. For the first time photography was available to everyone. Continue reading