The majestic bull elk are always a photographer’s target, but this young elk calf just kept mugging for the camera and was irresistible.
With the Cataloochee Valley of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park just a few minutes drive from the house, heading over for sunrise photos of the elk is a common trip. The calves are always well protected by the cows (not to mention, the ever protective bull) and good photos can actually be more challenging to capture than the bulls. This youngster was happily grazing within her protective herd, but also seemed to enjoy posing for the camera.
Plenty of bull photos from the morning as well, but that cute face was just too much to pass.
Beautiful animal! Do you know why they collar calves?
Not just calves. Most of the elk are collared. Those are used for tracking and identification purposes as they study the elk herds.