Northern Gannets of Bonaventure Island
Photo Safari & Expedition
June 5-7, 2017 (3 Days/4 Nights)
June 5-7, 2018 (3 Days/4 Nights)
Northern Gannet landing with sea weed (Morus Bassanus, Fou de Bassan, NOGA) Parc national de l'Île-Bonaventure-et-du-Rocher-Percé, Bonaventure Island, Quebec Image Copyright ©Christopher Dodds www.chrisdoddsphoto.com All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1D MKIII, 70-200mm F2.8 IS, (@200mm). ISO 400, F5.6 1/2500s Manual. Canon 580 EXII Flash in Manual - full power. Full Frame. PURCHASE A PRINT or LICENSE IMAGE FOR PUBLICATION HERE.
Join Christopher Dodds at the largest Northern Gannet colony in the world. Bonaventure Island, off the Gaspe Peninsula of Quebec, is home to more than 55,000 nesting pairs of Northern Gannets and it is such a beautiful place that National Geographic Traveler Magazine ranks Gaspé number three tourism destitation in the world (Nov./Dec. 2009). You haven’t really seen a Gannet until you see the activity at a breeding colony. Bonaventure Island is perhaps one of the world’s best places to teach avian flight technique. Other photographic opportunities will include all aspects of breeding behavior; courtship display, bowing (territorial display), sky pointing, fencing (two mates clashing their bills together while pointing skyward), mutual preening and copulation. Most of the nests will be occupied and will contain babies at various stages of development. In June, we’ll be feet away from hatching eggs and adults feeding their young on their nests. In September, we'll be just inches away from the cute and cuddly babies the hatched in the middle of June; some of them as big as the adult birds. The workshop is timed to coincide with the annual Caplin run in June, and the Mackerel run in September, so we hope to have plenty of opportunities to photograph these magnificent birds diving; sometimes forming huge diving funnels containing thousands of birds. Other photographic possibilities include thousands of nesting Black-legged Kittiwakes, Common Murres, Black Guillemots, Rozorbills, Gulls, Grey Seals and various Whales. Highlights will include a daily four hour adventure on a 24 foot Zodiac Hurricane (weather permitting). We should have ample opportunities to photograph Gannets diving and feeding in large funnels.
Northern Gannets SPOONING (fencing = pair bonding), Morus Bassanus, Fou de Bassan Parc national de l'Île-Bonaventure-et-du-Rocher-Percé, Bonaventure Island, Quebec Image Copyright ©Christopher Dodds www.chrisdoddsphoto.com All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1D S MKIII, 500mm F4 IS Gitzo 1325 tripod, Wimberley Head II. ISO 400, F18 1/200s Manual. Full Frame. Click HERE to purchase a print or license an image for publication.
Daily 4 hour Zodiac Adventure
Access to Bonaventure Island is tightly controlled, and it is impossible to land on the island before nine o’clock. The addition of the Zodiac voyage is the best way to maximize the morning light and photograph Gannets in a most unique way. This is your chance to spend four hours (weather permitting) onboard our 12 person (though our group of six will be the only passengers on board), 24 foot Zodiac on each of the three mornings of the workshop. Our Captain will be a huge asset to our expedition as he has lived in Perce all of his life and is an expert pilot who naturally positions his Zodiac in exactly the right place for photography. We will be his only passengers and he will be sure to maximize our time aboard. We will have many opportunities to photograph nesting Black-Legged Kittiwakes, Razorbills, Common Murres and Grey Seals: all at close range. We'll have many opportunities to photograph diving Gannets. After our Zodiac trip, we will land on the main wharf of Bonaventure Island at about nine o’clock and enjoy home-made snack before setting off on a 1.75 mile hike to the colony, where we’ll spend the remainder of the day. Our camera equipment will be hauled up to the colony by a motorized Kawasaki Mule, so we won't have to worry about carrying it on our backs.
Northern Gannet Painted Flight, Morus Bassanus, Fou de Bassan Parc national de l'Île-Bonaventure-et-du-Rocher-Percé, Bonaventure Island, Quebec Image Copyright ©Christopher Dodds www.chrisdoddsphoto.com All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1D MKIII, 70-200mm F2.8 IS, 1.4X II Tele-Converter (270mm) Hand-held from Zodiac. ISO 250, F8 1/1600s Manual. Full Frame. Click HERE to purchase a print or license an image for publication.
Who should attend:
This workshop is highly recommended for any level photographer. Whether you are completely new to bird photography, an experienced amateur, or a seasoned pro. There will be something to photograph all day long and I will have plenty of time to tailor your instruction to your abilities. The seasoned pro can take full advantage of my site knowledge and this is the only way to circumnavigate the island in a Zodiac before the island opens at 9AM.
Northern Gannets LOVE, Morus Bassanus, Fou de Bassan Bonaventure Island, Quebec ©Christopher Dodds www.chrisdoddsphoto.com All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1DsMKII, 300mm F2.8 and 1.4XII Tele-converter ISO 250, F8 1/800s Manual. CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE A PRINT or LICENSE AN IMAGE FOR PUBLICATION.
One of the great advantages of being only a few feet from our subjects is not needing to own or bring any super telephoto lenses. Great images can be made with focal lenghts from 15mm to 600mm during this workshop. I often use my 70-200mm F2.8, or my 300mm F2.8 for flight images; while my 500mm (with both the 1.4X and 2X teleconverters) are ideal for tight portraits. Many succesfull images are made with 400mm.
Northern Gannet EYE ON U, (Morus Bassanus, Fou de Bassan) Bonaventure Island, Quebec, Canada
Image Copyright ©Christopher Dodds http://www.chrisdoddsphoto.com All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1DsMKII, 70-200mm F2.8 @ 160mm 25mm, 12mm & 25mm Extension Tubes ISO 400, F14 1/180s Manual with Canon 580 EX Flash in manual mode and LumiQuest Soft-box III. Full frame. CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE A PRINT or LICENSE AN IMAGE FOR PUBLICATION.
77km from Gaspe Airport (YGP)
776km from Quebec City Airport (YQB)
1029km from Montreal Pierre Elliot Trudeau Int’l Airport (YUL)
Northern Gannets THE DIVE, Morus Bassanus, Fou de Bassan Bonaventure Island, Quebec ©Christopher Dodds www.chrisdoddsphoto.com Canon EOS 1DMKIII, 70-200mm F2.8 with 1.4XII Tele-converter @250mm Hand-held from Zodiac Hurricane 733 ISO 320, F8, 1/1600s Manual. CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE A PRINT OR LICENSE IMAGE FOR PUBLICATION.
Four nights hotel accommodatin (single occupancy).
Three 4 hour excursions on a Zodiac boat (weather permitting), and return from Bonaventure Island to Perce on a larger, commercial ferry.
Three days admission to Bonaventure Island
Three full days photographic instruction and Introductory slideshow and information session on the evening before the workshop.
Northern Gannet Portrait on the sea (Morus Bassanus, Fou de Bassan, NOGA) Parc national de l'Île-Bonaventure-et-du-Rocher-Percé, Bonaventure Island, Quebec Image Copyright ©Christopher Dodds All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1D MK IV, 800mm f/5.6 L IS. ISO 1,250 f/5.6 @ 1/1,250s Manual. Full Frame. PURCHASE A PRINT or LICENSE IMAGE FOR PUBLICATION HERE.
Our group will be limited to six participants.
Northern Gannet Missing Man (Morus Bassanus, Fou de Bassan, NOGA) Parc national de l'Île-Bonaventure-et-du-Rocher-Percé, Bonaventure Island, Quebec Image Copyright ©Christopher Dodds All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS 1D MK II, Canon 24-70mm f/2.8 L @ 70mm. ISO 400 f/6.3 @ 1/1,000s Manual. Full Frame. PURCHASE A PRINT or LICENSE IMAGE FOR PUBLICATION HERE.
Razorbill at sea in The Gulf of Saint Lawrence (Alca troda, petit pingouin, RAZO) Bonaventure Island, Parc national de l'Île-Bonaventure-et-du-Rocher-Percé, Quebec, Canada. Image Copyright ©Christopher Dodds All Rights Reserved. Canon EOS-1D MKIV, 800mm F5.6 L IS, Tripod & Jobu Jr. 3. ISO 500, f/5.6 @1/2,000s Manual mode. Full Frame. CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE A PRINT or LICENSE IMAGE FOR PUBLICATION. This one from my Gannets Galore and so much more workshop CHECK IT OUT HERE.
Bonaventure Island is THE best place in the world for Avian flight photography. Be prepared to be a little over-whelmed by the activity there. It is one of my favorite places on this earth, and I can't wait to share it with you.
Feel free to email me at: email@example.com or call me at +1 (450) 264-5757
"In September 2011, I attended Christopher Dodds’ “Gannets Galore” workshop in Perce, Quebec, Canada. I have attended many wildlife photo workshops over the years and this workshop was a 10+ without a doubt. The trip was exactly as he described on his web site; no overpromising and under delivering.
Chris provided access to a colony of 63,000 nesting pairs of Northern Gannets (and at least as many non-breeding birds) and his relationships with the local park staff allowed us to get to locations in the park that were closed to the public. Throughout the trip he was cheerful, very well organized and took care of all those details (and this was a complicated location) that can ruin an experience.. I was able to concentrate on what I came to do…..photography.
As a professional photographer I know my field, but it is a major bonus to find someone who can provide instruction to me. My flight shots improved dramatically! Chris has an uncanny understanding of composition and light and presented me with many opportunities to test my skills. He understands creativity in photography as well as being a technical master. This trip was perfect for a beginner or a professional and he gives as much instruction and guidance as you need without arrogance, attitude or making you feel too shy to ask. I would encourage any photographer, no matter what level, to sign up for Chris' workshops." - Terry Turrentine San Francisco | CA | USA
"In June of this year, I joined Chris Dodds on one of his Gannets Galore Workshops on Ile Bonaventure in the Gulf of Saint Lawrence, Quebec. Wow! What a place. Not only is the area surprisingly beautiful, the sheer number of Gannets nesting on this island is mind boggling - several hundred thousand Northern Gannets. In addition to Gannets there are other species photographable along the sea cliffs which Chris's participants get to experience like no others. Under a special clause, exclusive to Chris's workshop a zodiac with the participants is allowed to get up close to the sea cliffs to photograph Razorbill, Common Murre, Black-legged Kittiwake, Harlequin Duck and much more in their habitat. In addition, we spotted Blue Whale and Minke Whale and photographed Gray Seal and Humpback Whale. Nice touches like transportation of photo gear the 1.8 miles to and from the nesting colony really make this a worthwhile and productive trip. For seabird lovers, Ile Bonaventure is a must and the way to experience it is with Chris Dodds who has nearly 30 years of experience on this island." - E.J. Peiker, Nature Photographer
Be sure to read more testimonials from past participants HERE