Monday, January 14, 2008

Oh Snap! Teen Captures Dolphin Mid-flight

This kid has skills!

Standing on the back of a moving boat in Fiordland's Doubtful Sound, Christchurch teenager Tyler Christmas had one last shot at his target.

The 16-year-old steadied himself and pressed the shutter on his mother Karen's digital camera. What he got was a perfectly framed dolphin in mid-leap, with another of the pod just breaking the water in the boat's wake.

Tyler was on a holiday cruise with his parents on January 5 when a pod of 20 dolphins appeared in the boat's wake. As the dolphins zig-zagged, several started to jump out of the water.

Tyler said that on the first passes he shot either too early or too late, capturing snouts or tails. However, his persistence paid off.

"That was the last jump they did," the Linwood youngster said of his stunning photo.

However, when he downloaded the photograph onto his laptop, he was not overly impressed.

"I thought 'Hmm, OK. I have seen better'," he said.

However, after seeing the reaction of others, and with his mother's encouragement, he sent the photo to The Press summer holiday competition.

It arrived just too late, but the newspaper's illustrations editor was impressed.

Tyler is already eyeing a career in video or still photography.

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