Sunday, August 22, 2010
A quick post from the many shots I took yesterday on a hike out the Tomales Point Trail in Point Reyes National Seashore to see the tule elk rut. Here are two males trying to determine their ranking order. We watched both of these guys get run out of a harem by a larger male earlier in the day (no fight, these two just ran to the outskirts while the other male introduced himself to the females), and then after hanging out and feeding peacefully together on the edge of the harem they eventually came to blows to figure out who is the next bull in line, I suppose. There was no clear winner in this fight to us, and as quickly as it started, they stopped and went back to feeding near each other, apparently satisfied with the results of the quarrel for the time being.
It was really awesome to see a scuffle like this up close, and what stands out most about this shot to me is the intensity of their eyes while they fought. During the live action it was just a slow shoving match. But when you get to see these frozen moments in time, the intensity of the fight really comes to life.
View more of my photographs of tule elk in Point Reyes National Seashore.