Ecological tourism is an important addition to the hunting industry

Ecological tourism is an important addition to the hunting industry

The hunting farm "Krasny Bor" began to pay increased attention to ecological tourism and photography of wildlife several years ago.

Initially, special zones were allocated in the hunting grounds, where hunting was significantly limited (now only the removal of old animals and sanitary shooting are carried out there). Hunting on the two most active and large wood grouse was also completely prohibited. Over the years, we have gained a certain experience, which I want to share in this article.

Wildlife Photography Experience

Speaking in a very general way, now we mainly use three "tactical ways" of conducting photo tours:

  • “safari” in the wild;
  • hiding;
  • photographing from pre-arranged shelters.

Each of the above methods has its own characteristics and is selected depending on the type of animal intended for shooting, season of the year, meteorological conditions, physical capabilities of photographers and many other important points. Sometimes, during the same trip, you have to use all three "tactical techniques". Photo hunting, like hunting, is a creative process, and it is impossible to predict and plan everything in advance. After all, here, as well as on a hunt, until the last moment there remains an intrigue: will it be possible to achieve the set goal or not, at last you will be lucky or luck will again bypass it. At the same time, you are always sincerely happy, probably even more than the client, when the photographer manages to make the conceived successful shots.

Based on my experience, I can say that "safari" is the most popular way of conducting a photo tour with us, and this is primarily due to demand. With this technique, while searching for wild animals, you have to move a lot around the territory by car and our guests manage to visit various landscapes in a relatively short time.

Stealth is used when you need to take more interesting photos. With this technique, the photographer can not only choose the angle he needs, but also photograph wild animals when they behave more naturally, and not at the moment when they are alert or trying to hide when they see a person. This method already requires more professionalism, both from the photographer and from the accompanying person.

Taking pictures from pre-equipped shelters is both the easiest and the most difficult way to conduct a photo tour. This type of photography requires the greatest professionalism and painstaking preparation from the organizers, and from the photographer - endurance, perseverance and strict adherence to instructions. Now, from the shelters, we mainly photograph bison, deer during the roaring period, eagles at the bait and wood grouses during the mating season, but there are already plans to expand this list by including other, no less interesting species of wild animals.

And since the topic of capercaillie currents is touched upon here, I would like to dwell on it in more detail, since this very direction is the most realizable in many hunting farms. The key to success in this direction, of course, is the presence of stable wood grouse currents. However, not every current can be used for photography purposes. It is very important here that a sufficiently large number of roosters mow on it annually, and its boundaries are relatively constant and do not change from year to year. The availability of the current, its area and the nature of the vegetation on it are also important.

We use three different types of blinds to photograph wood grouse, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. Some are the cheapest and easiest to install, but less comfortable and less likely to conceal the presence of the photographer. The latter are more comfortable, but less mobile. Still others are more mobile, but require the use of technology, which is not always possible with wood grouse. An important condition for the effectiveness of using blinds is not only the ability to make good shots, but also acceptable comfort. It should be understood that in order not to disturb the wood grouses, the photographer needs to go to the current in the evening and spend the whole night on it, and spending the night in a swamp in early spring, even for professionals who have connected their lives with wildlife, can cause some discomfort. It should also be borne in mind that most of the clients with whom you have to work are, as a rule, city dwellers who escaped from warm apartments into nature. Therefore, it is important that the positive emotions from observing one of the most beautiful actions of the wild - the grouse of the wood grouse - are not crossed out by the discomfort of a long night, often spent in conditions of almost freezing temperatures.

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