Bosque del Apache NWR with Irene Hinke-Sacilotto

Situated along the Rio Grande River, Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge covers more than 57,000 acres and is a major wintering ground for cranes and waterfowl. Refuge personnel manage the water levels of its wetlands and impoundments to simulate what was once the seasonal flow of water from the Rio Grande before the river was damned and the flow altered. To feed the huge number of birds visiting the refuge each year, nearby fields are planted with corn, winter wheat, millet, and other grains. Loop roads transect the refuge marshes and fields and provide prime sites for wildlife viewing and photography. Species that may be seen include shovelers, buffleheads, pintails, teal and other ducks; bald and golden eagles; kestrels and other hawks; turkey; meadowlarks; quail; roadrunners; coyotes; mule deer; and more. In December, large flocks of snow geese and sandhill cranes will be present. At night to escape predators, the birds flock to the marshes and shallow pools. With dawn, the snow geese and other waterfowl rise in mass from the wetlands and sweep overhead on their way to nearby fields to feed. Each day we will spend the early morning and late afternoon hours at the refuge photographing birds and many other species of wildlife which are present on the refuge. Includes orientation, instruction in the field, and image review. Limited to 6 participants.

Bosque Del Apache and White Sands with Cathy and Gordon Illg

We have been photographing at Bosque since 1989! A wonderland for bird photographers with that special New Mexico light. We’ll also visit White Sands National Monument for some great landscape images–before and after dark! We’d love to have you join us!

Bosque del Apache with Jeff Parker

Bosque del Apache is one of my favorite locations and I know it well. I’ll get you to the right places at the right times so you — and your images — fully benefit from the non-stop action taking place amidst these gorgeous desert mountain landscapes.

This tour offers lots of chances to perfect your flight photography skills as well as opportunities to “play” with the effects lighting has on images. Though, honestly, this experience is so wonderful from a natural beauty perspective that you might forget all you know — or want to know — and just grin and stare (the morning “blast off,” especially, can take your breath away!).

America’s Better Idea: National Wildlife Refuges

The National Wildlife Refuges were created to manage, conserve and restore fish, wildlife and plants and the ecosystems that sustain them.

The National Wildlife Refuges were created to manage, conserve and restore fish, wildlife and plants and the ecosystems that sustain them.

Story and photographs by Jeff Parker

The National Parks have famously been called “America’s best idea”.  I have visited many of our National Parks and they ARE awesome.  However, I tend to think that our National Wildlife Refuges are “America’s Better Idea”.

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