That little moshav (village) in Neve Ativ proved to be a goldmine for me. The meadows that surrounded Neve Ativ were covered with little wild flowering plants, that late winter. Late winter in the HolyLand (Israel) just explodes with butterflies, especially following a rainy winter.
There I was, in those meadows on the slopes of Israel’s greatest mountain, with Syria just on the other side of Mt. Hermon. I’ve posted many times of the killing fields of Syria, even posting an image taken from the peak of Mt. Hermon, looking down, enabling you to see perhaps 100 miles or more into Syria, that panorama was taken in 2008, before most of the Syrians down there fled, or were . . . .
This pair of Lycaena Thersamon Omphale butterflies made me so happy. He on the left, she on the right. No wind, strong morning sun, they both strong and fresh, and they fully intent on what they were doing.
What did this more than 15-minute photo shoot with them cause me to think? Much. Much.
Coppers engaged, in the HolyLand. Wish you were there with me. I do.
I recently posted of the many challenges I meet when I photograph. Folks whom I meet ask first if I limit my work to museum butterfly exhibits (caged butterflies). No I answer I shoot in swamps, meadows and mountains. As I did in the recent post, I tell them of the risks I sometimes encounter, risks met to capture and score butterfly images, rare and common.
Here’s one this Brooklyn-raised boy met that I had no idea as to what to do? I was in the Nahal Dishon Reserve Park in the Uppermost Galilee region of the HolyLand/Israel. Alone, this park was proving to be a goldmine of common and rare Middle Eastern butterflies.
Unexpectedly, on this trail, I met her. She stood there, and having known women all my life, the look of her was not friendly, not at all. I quickly saw that her calf was resting there in the shade, it being another 94F day of full sun in the very dry northern Israel Galilee. I slowed my approach, and she kept looking at me, all what 1,200 pound or 1,400 pounds of her.
I’d been out on the streets my whole childhood and youth, but there were no cows in that Brooklyn. She looked fit and hale, and I kept remembering to NEVER get between a bear and her cubs. The trail passed about 10 feet away from the calf. I’d never been in this situation. I traveled 7,000 miles to get here, and I wanted to continue scoring big on the rest of the trail ahead of me.
What should I have done?