How to photograph wild wolverines
Finnature proudly presents probably the best place for Wolverine watching and photography in the world. The differs from other large carnivore baiting sites in Finland in that there are less Brown Bears and more Wolverines! This is good because Wolverines are afraid of the bears, Too many bears visiting the baits result in Wolverines not coming to the baits!
The Wolverine is an arctic loner, a solitary and rare mammal which is active all year around.
Wolverine is a stocky and muscular animal, considered carnivorous but known on occasion to eat plant material like berries. It has glossy brown hair with stripes of dull yellow along the sides. Its fur is long and dense and does not retain much water, making it very resistant to frost which is common in the wolverine’s cold habitat. The adult wolverine is about the size of a medium dog, with a length usually ranging from 65-87 cm a tail of 17-26 cm and weight of 10-30 kg. Males are as much as 30 percent larger than the females. In appearance the wolverine resembles a small bear with a long tail. It has been known to give off a very strong, extremely unpleasant odor, giving rise to the nicknames “skunk bear” and “nasty cat.” Wolverines, as other mustelids, possess a special upper molar in the back of the mouth that is rotated 90 degrees, or sideways. This special characteristic allows wolverines to tear off meat from prey or carrion that has been frozen solid and also to crush bones, which enables the wolverine to extract marrow.
For Wolverine photography it is essential to place just small pieces of meat in different places in front of the hides. The food pieces must be small, so they can be hidden from the Ravens and Gulls. A good way is to put small pieces high up in the pine trees which are in front of the hide. That way you get Wolverines climbing up to the trees! There are also several dead trees lying in front of the pro hides and it is not a bad idea to ask the guide to wash the bird droppings off the trunks before the photography session. You can also make special requests as to where you want the Wolverine to come and the food will be put there. There are probably more than 10 Wolverines visiting this site and in a normal night you may get ten to fifteen visits of the Wolverines. A single animal usually spends about 10 minutes searching for food in front of the hides. This offers plenty of good sightings and photography opportunities with the Wolverines!
You can use your tripod head or beanbags in the hides, so there is no need for a tripod. The recommended lenses for Wolverine photography are a 70- 200 mm lens and long telephoto lenses (300 mm- 800 mm). Naturally with different lenses you will get very different results. The Wolverines can come as close as five meters from the hides!
We are now also launching a new website www.wolverine-photography.com. You can make bookings to the hides at firstname.lastname@example.org
At the website you can book the whole Wolverine photography workshop, including land transportation from Joensuu airport, guiding, accommodation and meals. Or you can book just one night in a Wolverine hide. You can choose from the very comfortable large cabin hide (which are excellent for viewing) to the slightly smaller but also comfortable pro-hides (which are better for photography).