I always go in the field prepared and with intent. However my mind is also open for the unexpected.
One morning, I went to the Oyster River estuary with the intention to photograph ducks. I arrived very early in order to avoid the dog walkers, dogs being a major deterrent to wildlife observation and photography. The fog was starting to dissipate as I quietly entered the woods. Every few steps, I stopped, listened and looked for birds and other wildlife. That’s when I had the chance to spot a heron resting on a branch by the trail. The branch was low, which was perfect for an eye-level shot. I slowly approached the heron from the side, warning him of my presence. I quickly set up my camera and took a series of shots. I didn’t overstay because herons have a low tolerance level towards human presence and I didn’t want to disturb him any longer than necessary.
On that morning, although my intention was to photograph ducks in the estuary, I had the chance to observe a sleepy heron on a branch and come back with some great images. In nature photography, be prepared for lucky shots!