I participated in a miracle.
The scene was a beautiful, calm winter day in northern Saskatchewan. The sky was muted with heavy cloud cover that looked like it could release snow at any moment. We had the snow-packed gravel road to ourselves. Despite knowing better, I was there in the middle of the day – a less likely time to find wildlife.
The lifeless grey wires hanging near the road suddenly sported the life form I had been so desperately seeking. A Great Grey Owl had wrapped its deadly talons around that cold metal while searching the landscape with its laser eyes for prey.
It is for these moments that I have spent decades preparing and practicing. I quickly adjusted my camera settings and snared various poses of the owl looking in each direction. Hints of distant trees in the soft light made an interesting backdrop as I positioned myself for the best shots. This was a good day.
But I wanted something more – that something more is both the curse and allure of wildlife photography. In this case I wanted to catch it in flight!
A heavy camera/lens combination and mere mortal powers of concentration have their limits. I focused, waited, then regrouped, only to repeat the procedure with great fear of missing the action. Then I saw the owl stir and I anticipated the launch just before it happened.
The gorgeous creature soared into the air while I fired off a flurry of shots. I had captured it! Truly a miracle to align all the factors needed to get the shot.
That should be the end of the story but sometimes life isn’t like that. While I got other photos where the owl was below the wire, you guessed it, there was a wire crossing right over top of one of the best ones.
I do not own PhotoShop but with lots of trial and some error I managed to remove the wire from the photo using other software. This all leads to my closing question …
If I had posted the owl photo below without the wire and without an explanation, would you be annoyed if you found out later I had removed the wire?