Harbor Seal in the water off Machias Seal Island near Gull Rock
I just processed this image today but it is from July, 2010. I have just returned from a two week photo shoot trip to northern Maine which included Machias Seal Island and MooseHorn Wildlife Refuge. There are lots of Atlantic Puffin, Murres, Northern Gannet and RazorBills on Machias Seal island. I took this same trip last year and went back again this year because it is Wonderful! The seals are very close as you can see, as are the Puffins, Murres and Razorbills. These colorful clown like birds are a delight to photograph and also a challenge to catch in flight. The Puffins are present on the island only in the summer to breed. They are pelagalic (live at sea) the rest of the year. Andy at Bold Coast Charter out of Cutler Harbor is the perfect tour guide and captain. You must travel by boat about 10 miles off shore to view these creatures. Once on the island you are escorted to a blind so as not to disturb the birds and allowed to photograph anything within your field of view from the blind. This year I shot thousands of images and kept them on my Compact Flash cards to backup to my laptop. I ALWAYS backup my images every night but sadly this year I was so busy that I decided to have a long backup session during the second week of my trip. The second week I would be near Portland, Maine where I would be visiting family in addition to photographing birds and scenery because life would be less hectic. I stopped at Gilsland Farms which is along the Presumpscot River estuary near Portland, Maine. I took a 2 hour walk with one camera and one lens in search of Bobolink and any other interesting birds or wildlife to photograph. When I returned to my car, three Kata backbacks filled with camera equipment had been stolen including my compact flash cards with the thousands of images from the previous week. So the lesson here is NEVER get too busy to back up your images! That’s why last year’s harbor seal is looking at you!