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Photos of the Week: Louisiana's Wildlife and Wild Places

  • NWF Staff
  • PhotoZone
  • Jun 05, 2017

Check out some of our favorite photos from past National Wildlife photo contests. Each week we'll celebrate nature and wildlife from a different state and this week we're featuring the stunning nature and wildlife found in Louisiana.

Photographer Timothy Vidrine writes about the northern parula, "These little warblers have a unique song and can be heard during nesting season in Louisiana's Atchafalaya National Wildlife Refuge." The Louisiana resident used a Canon EOS 40D with a 500mm lens and 1.4x teleconverter on a tripod.

Wildlife photographer Stephen Kirkpatrick made this image of a great blue heron in a Louisiana swamp with a Nikon F5 and 500mm lens. The Mississippi resident writes, "At sunrise, I noticed this great light on the cypress trees and then noticed the heron near in a perfect color match."

Timothy Vidrine was waiting for song birds to appear to photograph in Atchafalaya National Wildlife Refuge when "this little fellow popped up next to my boat and allowed me to setup for this image." The Louisiana photographer used a Canon 40D with a 500mm lens to capture this image of an American Alligator. Read Ranger Rick's fun facts about alligators.

Nature photographer Michael Jones caught these two ruby-throated hummingbirds fighting over feeding territory, and "a split second after this image was taken the two birds hit with a pop and flew off." The Lacassine photographer used a Nikon D300 with a 300mm f/4 lens. Get tips for taking sharp image of these fast flights of fancy.

When photographer Brad Watson spotted this nine-banded armadillo in Louisiana's Atchafalaya National Wildlife Refuge, he "had to sprint down the trail in order to get in a position to get the shot." The Texas resident made this image with a Nikon D200 and 200-400mm lens, writing "once in front of him, he seemed to like the attention."

Baton Rouge resident Kenneth Adkins writes, "During spring migration I patiently waited at a mulberry tree until this beautiful bird was sent from heaven for me to photograph." Adkins took this portrait of a scarlet tanager at Louisiana's Lake Pontchartrain with a Canon 1D Mark II and 500mm f/4 lens. Get tips on photographing birds from a longtime National Wildlife contributor.


Nature photographer David Chauvin made this image of a rock hind in the Gulf of Mexico, 70 feet below the surface, with a Sea&Sea DX-1G 10MP digital camera, 15mm lens and YS-110 strobe. The Louisiana resident writes, "Scuba diving the oil rigs off of the Louisiana coast is an eye opening experience." Read about what we do to restore the Gulf Coast.

Nature photographer Jude Haase captured this white ibis feasting in a south Louisiana crayfish pond with a Canon 30D, 500mm f/4 lens and 1/4x teleconverter. He writes, "Every year around the month of May, crayfish farmers drain their ponds to get ready for the summer. During this time, as the water gets lower, thousands of birds show up to eat crayfish and small fish. It's an awesome sight to see!"

Photographer Bill Harbin writes, "I spent 30 minutes slowly moving in on this dragonfly in the swamp until I was only six inches away in order to capture this wide-angle image of flower and insect." The Georgia resident photographed this Eastern pondhawk dragonfly on swamp iris in Lake Verrett, Louisiana with a Canon 5D Mark II and 24mm lens.

Photographer Timothy Vidrine made this portrait of a loggerhead shrike in Louisiana's Lacassine National Wildlife Refuge using a Canon 40D with a 500mm lens and 1.4x teleconverter. Read The Strange World of the Strike, from National Wildlife's archives.

Nature photographer Mark Lagrange writes, "Seldom do photographers venture into the Louisiana swamps at night. This starfield captures a different mood and vision of our backwaters." The Metairie resident made this image in Lake Fausse Pointe State Park with a Canon 5D Mark II and 24-105mm lens.

Nature photographer Patricia Harper writes, "I love ladybugs, and this beautiful little creature was in the perfect spot for a photo." The Louisiana resident used a Canon T41 camera. Though these bugs look similar to native species, the Asian lady beetle was introduced into this country to control pests and is now wreaking havoc. Read more in National Wildlife's Good Bugs Gone Bad.

Louisiana wildlife photographer Darlene Eschete made this image of a snowy egret pair in Jefferson Island, Louisiana with a Nikon D200 and 80-400mm lens on a tripod. She writes, "Another beautiful display of plumage as these frisky snowy egrets tangle over the rights of ownership to this tree branch. The egret to the right won ownership for a short time. Studying the behavior of these birds in their natural habitat has been very rewarding."

Maryland resident Ryan Taylor photographed this interaction between tree frogs in Louisiana's Atchafalaya National Heritage Area with a Canon 3D, 100mm lens and 550EX flash. He explains, "Male frogs court by producing species-specific songs. Females recognize the songs of their own males and respond. Here a squirrel treefrog male (the smaller individual on back) was found mating with a much larger female gray treefrog. Since female gray treefrogs almost certainly don't respond to calls of different species, this male probably grabbed the female as she happened to walk by."

Wildlife photographer Allen Sparks snapped this photo of a cattle egret carrying nesting material back to the nest at a rookery in New Iberia, Louisiana with a Canon 7D, 400mm lens and 1.4x teleconverter on a monopod. Learn how differentiate between egrets, herons and cranes with NWF's David Mizejewski.

Nature photographer David Chauvin captured a fishing spider feast in south Louisiana with a Canon 30D, 300mm f/4 lens and extension tubes on a tripod with a remote release. He writes, "These large spiders often inhabit cypress trees completely surrounded by water. They sit motionless and then pounce on prey, such as this dragonflies, with astonishing speed."

Photographer Jeremy Woodhouse writes, "While cruising down a river in Louisiana on a chilly morning, I came across this backlit swamp red maple. A light mist on the water complemented the bright red seed pods and Spanish moss." The Texas resident made this image using a Canon 1D Mark III with a 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 lens. When it comes to landscape photography, learn how to use the right tool for the right impact.

Nature photographer David Chauvin documented an adult pileated woodpecker returning to the nest to feed its young in southern Louisiana with a Canon 30D, 500mm f/4 lens and 1.4x teleconverter. Read NWF's Garden Habitats blog, Eight Wonky and Wonderful Woodpecker Adaptations.

Photographer Sunday Mitchell photographed a black swallowtail butterfly as it "moved from flower to flower before finally landing on this milkweed bloom," in a wildlife area near Slidell, Louisiana. The local resident used a Canon 30D with a 75-300mm lens. Learn how to attract butterflies to your backyard habitat.

Conservation photographer Ron Wooten made this aerial image of Intracostal City in Louisiana with a Canon 50D, 18-55mm lens and circular polarizing filter. He writes about the experience, "Flying offshore on a cold, foggy morning proved to be one of the more incredible trips I've ever taken. Fog hugged the coastal area tightly this day. Still and beautiful, this little fishing/offshore oil community has been battered by hurricanes, with blown over buildings and debris still evident from Katrina, Rita, and the dozen or so other storms that have impacted this area."

More from the National Wildlife Federation:

Learn about NWF Affiliate Louisiana Wildlife Federation
Visit Louisiana Wildlife Federation's website
Restoring New Orleans' Battered Wetlands
Louisiana coastal restoration efforts in peril
Swamping Louisiana 
NWF blogs about Louisiana and the Louisiana Wildlife Federation
Find National Parks and Refuges in Louisiana
National Wildlife Federation's South Central Regional Center
Nature's Witnesses: Powerful images of wilderness can inspire conservation

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