I've never been a hunter. The only time I intentionally killed an animal was when walking railroad tracks as a teenager and encountered a coyote that exhibited symptoms of rabies. Coyotes normally dont slober a lot, growl at you and start walking toward you so I "Old Yellered" the beast. The only thing I like to shoot animals with is my camera.
I'm not anti hunting though, not in the least. My closest friends are hunters and I often enjoy what they bring home, deer in particular. Hunting just isn't something I enjoy personally. Photographing deer though is something I love. Deer can be tricky to photograph though. Most of my deer photo opportunities have happened by accident.
All of the photos in this article were shot using a 70-300mm zoom lens. The snow covered photos were the result of being parked in my dad's white car which helped to camoflage me a bit. He never would've gotten that close if I had been in my blue Mercury Cougar. Since most of these photos are shot at 300mm and deer can move quickly, I try to keep my minimum shutter speed at 1/500. I will lower the f/stop and increase the ISO as needed.
For the two images below, I came upon her by accident when driving past a row of trees. There were three of them feeding in the field. They saw me and began to flee. I killed the engine and slowly came to a stop and sat there quietly. As soon as they saw that I wasn't a threat, they began to mostly ignore me and go back to feeding. I sat there for nearly 10 minutes getting photos.
I hope to get many more photos this Winter. I'll be sure to post on my Facebook page when and if I do.