The eagle and the bear

Jeroen Hoekendijk's Image

Black bear cubs will often climb trees, where they wait safely for their mother to return with food.

Here, in the depths of the temperate rainforest of Anan in Alaska, this little cub decided to take an afternoon nap on a moss-covered branch under the watchful eye of a juvenile bald eagle. The eagle had been sitting in this pine tree for hours and Jeroen found the situation extraordinary. He quickly set out to capture the scene from eye-level and, with some difficulty and a lot of luck, was able to position himself a bit higher on the hill and take this image as the bear slept on, unaware.


Behind the lens

Jeroen Hoekendijk

The Netherlands

Image details

  • Canon EOS 5D Mark III
  • Sigma 150–600mm f5.0–6.3 lens
  • 1/320 sec at f6.3
Copyright in WPY competition photographs remains the property of the respective photographers. You may not copy, share, reproduce or republish the photographs except as expressly permitted by copyright law. For media image usage enquiries, please contact us.

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