Persistence and Luck

Early last week, I read an article by professional photographer Jim Richardson about the virtues of planning and preparation vs. dumb luck.  I thought it was interesting at the time but it resonates even more after what I experienced later that week.  His last sentence sums up the article nicely,  “As for me, I’ll take predictability over luck every day of the week.”   While I very much agree with his statement,  it doesn’t hurt to be lucky too!

As my regular readers and close friends know, I spend a lot of time attempting to photograph the local bobcats.  I suppose it has become something of an obsession to me.  And this obsessiveness paid off once again last Sunday with one of my closest encounters yet.  Just after sunset, I found the female bobcat lying in the grass, just off the footpath.  She seemed quite undisturbed by my presence and I could have sat and watched her until it was too dark to see.  (As a rule, I try not to remain near them for more than a few minutes so as not to disturb their prime hunting time too much.)

Now, onto the Luck part…  I have heard of another bobcat family located at the San Joaquin Wildlife Sanctuary located in Irvine, CA.  Since I had to drive down to San Diego for work on Thursday, I decided to head out early and look around for them.  From what I have read, many local photographers feel lucky if they see one of the bobcats more than once or twice a year.  Therefore, I felt that my chance of seeing one, let alone any of the kittens, was exceedingly low.  And, I almost didn’t.  But after walking around for two hours and deciding it was time to go, the mother and a kitten appeared.  It doesn’t hurt to be lucky indeed!

“Bobcat I”  –  Lake Los Carneros, Goleta, CA

“Bobcat II”  –  Lake Los Carneros, Goleta, CA

“Bobcat III”  –  Lake Los Carneros, Goleta, CA

“Bobcat IV”  –  Lake Los Carneros, Goleta, CA

Ooops, this is a dangerous place to be.  I’m outta here!!  –  SJWS, Irvine, CA

“Mother and Kitten”  –  San Joaquin Wildlife Sanctuary, Irvine, CA

“Mother”  –  San Joaquin Wildlife Sanctuary, Irvine, CA

“Kitten I”  –  San Joaquin Wildlife Sanctuary, Irvine, CA

“Kitten II”  –  San Joaquin Wildlife Sanctuary, Irvine, CA


6 Responses to Persistence and Luck

  1. Very nice Barry! I continually enjoy your photos

  2. wildphotography says:

    Thanks Joel! I still owe you a photo or two…

  3. Always such great captures! I keep checking back to see if you have more pictures of the bobcats, and these ones are as amazing as always. I hope I get my share of dumb luck encountering the lakes cats some day!

  4. Luck? Maybe some but you helped it along by knowing your subject and researching the bobcats whereabouts. I am amazed you get so close to them and they are fully aware of you. Outstanding!

  5. wildphotography says:

    Thanks for the great comments Scott and Dustin!

  6. Fiona says:

    A visual treat! Thank you! 🙂

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