Baby Face

By: Danny Brown

Aug 14 2012

Tags: , , ,

Category: Mammals


August 14, 2012

Even an opossum has a sweet face when it’s a baby and this one is no exception. I was driving down a road in St. Charles County one afternoon when I spotted this little guy along the shoulder. A quick scan of the area revealed mama in a nearby tree so I was relieved to see it wasn’t quite on its own yet. I just happened to have my camera and 500mm lens in my truck as I had been photographing earlier that morning. I pulled into a driveway, jumped out and scrambled down into a ditch to make this image from an eye-level point of view. It was a long reach and the necessary crop was far beyond my usual threshold but the little critter still came out pretty sharp so I decided to share it with you. I was happy to see that the slice of road I had to include in the image complemented the critter’s color.

Not only is this baby opossum a cutie, but it has some character as well. From the looks of its papery ears, it has already been in a few scraps and it has a funny looking nose, even by opossum standards. Unfortunately, like most opossums, it appears to have an affinity for roadside adventures so by the time you read this my little friend might be in opossum heaven. In keeping with my ever positive attitude, I’ll assume it has grown up by now and produced a crop of babies of its own. For years I’ve been hoping to run across a mama opossum with 10 or 12 babies hanging on to every part of her body, including her head and face. It would be a dream photograph for me, even though MDC’s retired photographer, Jim Rathert, already captured just such an image several years ago. I don’t often try to get the same photo that somebody else has already debuted, but in this case I would be thrilled at the opportunity. In the meantime, please enjoy this slice of nature, courtesy of Missouri’s natural wonders…..and roadsides.

Canon 1D Mark IV; Canon 500/4 L IS Lens; 1/2000 sec @ f/4.0; ISO 200; RAW Capture; Gitzo GT3530LS with Wimberley II Gimbal Head; Processed in Canon Digital Photo Professional (DPP)

Note to Photographers: In this case, I could have used a much slower shutter speed and a tighter aperture to achieve more depth of field across the opossum’s body. Regardless of experience, we all get in a hurry sometime!

Thanks for Looking!



6 comments on “Baby Face”

  1. Agree that the babies of any species are cute! What a great eye-level shot….I found a baby Possum, of all places, in the African deer enclosure in the St.Louis Zoo…but it was so very shy. Makes me appreciate the difficulty of this shot!

    • Hi Deepa. You would have enjoyed the zoo and Forest Park over the last few weeks as it has been in the 50’s at night and 70’s to low 80’s during the day. It is supposed to get even cooler next week. Only three weeks until Teal Season! Take care.

  2. Hi Danny — I don’t say it as offten as when you sent these pictures and stories to our inboxes directly, but still loving to get them. Keep up the good work!

    • Thanks James; Iappreciate that. It will never be the same for me either but the send list was just getting too big. Thanks for keeping up with the blog. By the way, I photographed a nice juvenile Kentucky warbler out by the bus stop at SNR the other day. Take care.

  3. Thank’s Danny, for sending me the photo on that sweet faced opossum. Its to bad they have to grow up, and become mean, and ugly. I hope that you have a great rest of the week.


    On Tue, Aug 14, 2012 at 5:30 PM, Nature Frames

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