North of 49 Photography offers Canadian tours and workshops for enthusiasts that want to explore all that Canada has to offer through their lens.
From the western shores of Vancouver Island, to the lighthouses on the eastern coast of Nova Scotia, and north beyond the arctic circle; each tour and workshop is designed with our travel partners with the photographer in mind.
Please visit www.northof49photography.com for more details
Monday, November 30, 2015
Wildlife Photography Workshops in Canada
We have listed a significant amount of wildlife workshops in Canada that are designed with the photographer in mind.
bears, to whales, loons and gannets, we have compiled a photo workshop
or tour for everyone’s wildlife bucket list trip behind the camera.
I want to focus on the bear workshops and tours we are leading in
Canada. The Species we are focusing on in 2016 and 2017 are the
Grizzly Bear - Grizzly
Bear (scientific name: Ursus arctos horribilis), sometimes called the
Silvertip Bear, is a subspecies of the brown bear living in North
Roaming the North
American continent for the past million years, the grizzly bear has
managed to outlive both the saber-toothed tiger and the mastodon.
major targets of human hunters, however, the tens of thousands of
grizzlies that once inhabited the Great Plains and the Rockies and
Sierras of the American West have been reduced to a fraction of their
grizzlies live in Alaska and Canada. Probably fewer than a thousand
remain in the 48 contiguous states, and those bears are found almost
exclusively in some 10 million acres of Idaho, Montana and Wyoming.
you know the term "grizzly" refers to the white-tipped hairs that give
it a frosty grizzled appearance, particularly those of the Rocky
Mountains, and colors can range from a grayish color through
yellow-brown to a dark-brown or nearly black coloration. The color
depends largely on the grizzly bear habitat and also on the indigenous
The size of grizzly
bears decreases generally from the north to the south, ranging from up
to 680 kilograms in the north to 80 to 200 kilograms in the south of the
grizzly bear male is on average 1.8 times heavier than the female.
Despite its massive figure he can run with a speed of over 60 km/h. The
forelegs and the shoulders of the grizzly are particularly massive and
powerful, enabling him to dig and to climb. Grizzly bears climb trees to
find honey and are accomplished swimmers.
use their claws and powerful jaws to fight, catch their food and to
mark their territory on the trunks of trees. A grizzly's sense of smell
is well developed, and its life expectancy is around 30 years.
grizzly bear accumulates 200 kg of fat in order to survive the harsh
winters of its habitat in a state of lethargy which is not, however, a
real hibernation. The grizzly bear is omnivorous, eating anything from
fish, honey and ants to beached whales. They also feed on dead game and
other carrion. On rare occasions they kill elk and dig out ground
squirrels and foxes.
90% of its diet is vegetarian. The grizzly bear is normally a solitary
animal buts gets together with other bears along the banks of
fast-flowing streams and rivers during the salmon breeding period when
the fish are going upriver to spawn… and that is when we go photograph
In 2016 we are headed to northern BC to photograph inland Grizzly feeding on salmon on the following workshops.
In 2017 we are headed to northern BC to photograph inland Grizzly feeding on salmon on the following workshops.
2017 – Details available shortly. But this trip is a 10 day and 9 night
nature adventure is perfect for any wildlife and nature enthusiast! Our
destination, a remote bear camp only accessible by helicopter deep
inside the BC wilderness. From there we head north for to photograph the
northern lights in the Yukon. Please contact us to go on a waiting
photo by Cael Cook
Black Bear -
Black bears move in response to the seasonal availability of food and
have excellent memories, particularly regarding food sources. Bears are
able to learn about food types and locations, and reapply that knowledge
over time and space – a sure sign of intelligence.
Black bears can run 30 to 35 mph and, contrary to some myths, can easily run up and down hill.
bears have good eyesight, but don’t discern the yellow-red-orange color
spectrum as well as humans. They also have exceptional hearing. Their
sense of smell is unparalleled – more than seven times greater than a
dog, particularly for food-related scents. Black bear habitat is
primarily forests, forest edges and forest clearings. Reflecting this,
their shorter curved and sharp claws evolved for climbing trees which
they do to escapepredators, find food, sleep and rest. They also are
excellent for shredding and taking apart decaying snags and downed logs
in order to reach insects, insect colonies and even amphibians and small
mammals which live and find refuge in decaying wood. In contrast,
grizzly bear claws are much longer, more blunt and are used primarily
for excavating food from their preferred open country and high mountain
meadow habitats. Grizzly bears, although not adapted primarily for
tree-climbing, can still climb any tree you can climb!
bear females do not reproduce until they are three to five years old
but some may be as old as seven when they first produce young. Females
normally breed every other year and have an average of two cubs, but can
have one to five. Cub mortality is high, with an average of 50 percent
dying in their first year due to natural causes. The female has 6
nipples, but often only two primary teats produce milk that is
exceptionally high in fat, hence the cubs’ rapid growth.
conceive during the summer (mid June to July in Washington) and overall
gestation time is 7 to 7 1/2months. However, impregnated females go
through a process called delayed implantation so actual embryo
development does not begin until November or December. Cubs are born
two months later, in January or February weighing just225 to 330 grams
(1/2 to 3/4 pounds) and measuring about 8 inches long. The cubs are
blind and deaf, have poorly developed hindquarters, and are covered with
fine down-like hair. They suckle frequently from the female in the den
and emerge with her in the spring. They remain with the female for 16 to
18 months during which time she teaches them everything they need to
know to survive.
Female black bears do not mate while rearing young, so may only produce six litters in her lifetime.
average lifespan of a black bear can be up to 18 years, and the oldest
documented wild bear lived to 31. During their lives black bears can
suffer from arthritis, cavities, fractures from falls, broken and worn
teeth, bites from other animals and gun shots.
bears are in the taxonomic Order Carnivora, but their diet is
omnivorous, meaning they eat both plants and animals. Approximately
eighty to eight-five percent of a black bear’s typical diet is plant
material, while the remaining 15% is made up of animal protein. Black
bears will eat almost anything, such as grubs from a bumblebee nest,
bird eggs, ants, voles, grasses and berries.
bears are also opportunistic, meaning they take advantage of whatever
is available. They will occasionally eat carrion when available and
will hunt and kill their own prey including calves of elk, moose and
deer. They also scavenge meat from winter-killed animals, dig for
rodents, and eat termites, ants, grubs and other insects.
bear’s diet changes seasonally. In spring, bears eat the tender
emerging shoots of sedges, grasses, cow parsnip, leaf buds and skunk
cabbage. Although their diet is omnivorous and their digestive system is
much more robust than ours, bears still have the digestive system of a
carnivore so cannot digest firm plant cellulose well. They target many
plants in the spring when young shoots are most digestible and
2016 we are headed to British Columbia to photograph black bear as they
feed at low tide along the BC coastal waters on the following trips.
2017 we are headed to British Columbia to photograph black bear as they
feed at low tide along the BC coastal waters on the following trips.
2017 – If you want to join us as we travel to the extreme west coast of
British Columbia. We are headed to Vancouver Island to capture some of
Canada's most pristine landscapes, black bears, whales and seascapes
during a time of year when the morning fog creates a mysterious aura.
The details are Coming Soon. Contact us to be notified of details when
we announce them by clicking http://northof49photography.com/contact-us/
Photo by Doug Neasloss
Spirit Bear - The rare Spirit Bear is known locally by several names;
-Kermode Bear, named after Francis Kermodei, former director of the Royal B.C. Museum.
-White Bear or Ghost Bear is often used by local folks.
-Moksgm’ol by local First Nations.
-Ursus americanus kermodei by Scientists.
Bear is a more recent name for the White Bear. Appropriate for a bear
that is known for it’s elusive, ghostly yet timid nature.
rare White Bear is actually a Black Bear! Scientists are actively
studying this rare genetic trait that is possibly due to a recessive
gene, or could be due to a result of a concentration of gene in a given
area. The Spirit Bear is not an albino.
estimate there are 1,200 black and white Kermode bears in the coast
area of British Columbia that stretches from around the northern tip of
Vancouver Island northwards to the Alaska panhandle.
sightings are reported around the Terrace area, making the Spirit Bear
it’s official mascot. They are often seen as far east as Hazelton, as
far north as the Nass Valley up to Cranberry Junction and as far west as
Kitimat is closest to the largely populated area of Princess Royal
Island, there are almost no sightings in the area.
most black bears, the Spirit Bear only weighs about half a pound at
birth, growing to 150-300 pounds when fully grown. The Kermode’s size
averages between 4 and 6 feet. Height measured from paw to shoulders
averages between 2 ½ and 3 feet.
The beautiful Spirit Bear will eat almost anything. Including you! However, there have been no reports of them eating people.
omnivores, they mostly live on fish and berries, but also eat deer and
moose fawns, carrion, insects, plants, fruits, nuts, mushrooms and nuts.
They depend on salmon runs in the fall to fatten themselves up for the
long winter hibernation, where they can go without food for up to 7
months. This is the time frame we visit BC to photograph the spirit
bears… and timing is everything to increase your chances. Having lived
in BC I constantly monitor and watch the salmon spawns as they change
slightly year over year. This allows us to adjust the tours for spirit
bears to make sure you have the best chance to see them as they feed on
sexual maturity at three to four years of age. They mate during the late
spring, early summer months, gestating about 220 days. Cubs are born in
their mother’s winter den in January or February, and are weaned at
about eight months, but may remain with their mother for up to a
year-and-a-half, when she is ready to mate again.
Like black bears, their average life span is about 25 years.
In 2017 we are headed to British Columbia to photograph the rare Spirit Bear in the rainforest on the following trip.