What can’t you do with a drone? Military applications have multiplied over the last decade or so to the point that drones are a huge sensation. Drones are able to go where no one and nothing else can go and capture images that have never been seen or possibly even imagined before. It’s unbelievable how many of the very best photos are online for anybody to find. All you have to do is look. Here are the best photos ever taken by drones.
For sure, someone you know has flown one for fun, in their back yard or local park. We have all seen footage on the news of surgical airstrikes by UAV’s (unmanned aerial vehicles). The Drone application, that is spreading like wildfire, more than any other, is using them in conjunction with high-resolution cameras to take some of the most unbelievable footage anyone has ever seen.
HE SHOOTS HE SCORES
This soccer player was caught in midair by a professional drone operator in the middle of performing a bicycle kick. Always inspiring to see an athlete at the top of his game doing something nearly impossible. But why does he appear to be playing soccer on a tennis field?
Yet another shot taken with perfect timing. In photography as in sports, there’s room for pros and amateurs alike.
THE CITY OF HOMS, DESTROYED
The civil war in Syria began in 2011. The opposition forces were headquartered mostly in the city of Homs. This photo shows the extent of the damage: the city is almost entirely abandoned and is largely destroyed.
The Syrian civil war has sadly rained death and destruction upon much of that country. No matter one’s political or religious leanings, it is impossible not to feel compassion.
THE MOMENT OF TRUTH
Heartstopping. This action shot of an eagle just a split second before it catches a fish could scarcely be any better. Stunning and awe-inspiring. It’s no wonder eagles are symbols of power throughout the world.
Look at the outstretched talons, the focused eyes, the soaring wings. Is there anything about this photo that isn’t a work of art?
THE CIRCLE OF LIFE
A drone caught this image of a dead whale that washed up on a rocky beach.
Nobody knows how or why the whale died, but we humans have a particular soft spot in our hearts for whales, and it’s always sad to see one go.
GIANT STUFFED BUNNY
200 feet of stuffed weirdness. When you send your drone through the Alps, a gigantic stuffed rabbit is not what you expect to find. What is it doing there? We don’t know. Perhaps it is some sort of modern art exhibit. Or maybe a there’s a 500-foot toddler just out of frame. Who’s ready to donate a 50-foot carrot to this exhibit?
I don't know about you, but if I ever send a drone out to photograph the Alps, I think I’ll focus on forests, rivers, mountains, and architecture. But to each his own, I guess.
A drone discovered this hidden platform atop a Savannah, Georgia church. Something is clearly going on up there; I just hope it’s all good. Time will tell.
But seriously, even architecture, not among the most secretive of disciplines, contains hidden gems that drones are helping to uncover.
Think that’s a scarecrow? Wrong! It’s a scary clown. I have no idea if this was a staged scene, but what’s for sure is that it’s supremely weird. Okay, bye bye now, Sir Clown!
And while we’re at it, what exactly is the deal with scary clowns, anyway? Aren’t they supposed to be fun, funny, and adorable?
Lava alive! This photo is equal parts frightening and awe-inspiring. And do you see that dude standing right on the ledge? Wonder what he’s doing there? Word is he was a member of a scientific research team. They say several drones were lost over the course of the mission due to the high temperatures they were operating under.
Shout-out to our brave scientists. So much of what makes our world today better for humanity is due to their courage, passion, intelligence, and creativity to uncover the hidden secrets of the universe.
AWESOME WEDDING PHOTO
This freshly married couple got the wedding photo of a lifetime with an overhead shot from a drone. Just looking at it triggers my vertigo, but I can’t help feel a little jealous anyway.
These ingenious folks made quite the innovative decision not only to get married on the roof of a skyscraper but also to have the wedding photo shot from even higher using a drone. When you use your imagination, the sky’s the limit!
CHRIST THE REDEEMER
This gut-wrenching shot of one of the world’s most famous landmarks was taken in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. It shows Christ the Redeemer from an angle only birds have ever seen before. Not only is it one of the world’s tallest statues, but it rests on a mountain that itself looks over the city.
This is a perfect example of using drones to show people previously unseen -- and unseeable -- perspectives and sights. Three cheers for technology, and for the creativity to know how to use it!
DRONES OVER DUBAI
The creative idea of using two drones totally helps to give you the idea of what it takes to get these shots. Plus, you see what an ultra-modern city Dubai is, and what kind of insane architecture fills it these days. Skyscrapers? These ones literally pierce the clouds!
It’s amazing how quickly Dubai has gone from a sleepy third-world backwater to one of the most modern bustling metropolises on the planet. It seems like there’s nothing that human ingenuity and hard work can’t accomplish.
In the very middle of a town in South Africa sits this ugly gigantic diamond mine. You can see how the buildings stand right up to the edge of the dropoff. Insane. I wonder what it's like to live right next to such an enormous pit?
This drone footage certainly gives us a new perspective on life. Hopefully, human ingenuity will help ameliorate some of these problems.
The Detroit Lions football team used to play at the now dilapidated Silverdome until the new Ford Field was completed in 2002. In the meantime, it has gone through multiple owners and even gutted of anything that could be sold for scrap.
A drone took this photo after the collapse of the stadium’s domed roof. The Silverdome is iconic of the Detroit city’s troubles.
EL NINO DAMAGE
In this frightening photo, you see the continuing undermining of a neighborhood due to the El Nino weather phenomenon. The residents understandably had to evacuate the area. It would come as no surprise if it all collapses into the sea any day now.
Nature, you scary! Nothing like seeing the incredibly destructive power of nature to help put us little humans in our place. But on the other hand, we can see it as an opportunity to invent new ways of mitigating the damage.
THE AFTERMATH IN MOSUL
It might be hard to tell, but what you’re seeing in this drone photo was at one time a historic mosque in the Iraqi city of Mosul. Built in the 12th century, it was the spiritual home for generations of Muslims until its 2017 destruction by ISIS. Not content with demolishing the mosque, they also destroyed much of the surrounding city.
Occupying much of historical Mesopotamia, Iraq rests upon the very cradle of civilization. But it is a troubled part of the world today, and as always it is the innocent that pay the price. Here’s hoping for better times.
HONG KONG FROM ABOVE
How crazy is this? How did they fit so many huge buildings in this tiny space? It’s a little bit dizzying and overwhelming looking down on this drone scene.
Hong Kong has been the poster child for ultra-modern cities for so long, it’s incredible how they never seem to fall behind. And what a view we get in this photo from the drone!
Any idea what you’re looking at here? Apparently, a kayak festival on a Chinese lake went a little overboard (pardon the pun). How would you feel if you found yourself in the very middle of it all?
I think this photo would make an amazing 3000 piece jigsaw puzzle. Challenging, but amazing. Check out the riot of color!
FLOODED THEME PARK
Can you believe it? When Hurricane Katrina laid waste to the whole region, this Louisiana theme park was completely flooded. Even though it was closed down for a long time, the water finally receded some years ago and the park reopened. Some movies and TV shows, like NCIS: New Orleans and Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters, have even been filmed here since!
Thank goodness for drones. Just think of how much we’d be ignorant of if we didn’t have them to do our exploring for us! Even in the middle of the USA!
THE ARTHUR KILL SHIP GRAVEYARD
Did you know that right next to Staten Island there’s a ship graveyard hiding in plain sight? Ships that had been damaged would be kept there during the Second World War until they could be sold for scrap. But they never got to them all before abandoning the project. It’s so eerie that almost nobody ever visits.
Basically, in the middle of one of the world’s major cities, one of the most important tourist destinations on the planet, you can find such weird abandoned areas. Who would believe it? Great photo, though.
Hurricane Harvey marked the first time since 2005 that a category three or higher storm hit the USA. This compelling drone image documents just a fraction of the damage that it wrought. 37 Americans lost their lives in the storm, in addition to as much as 10 billion dollars in damage.
Can you imagine being the owner of one of these houses? Even assuming that the damage was covered by insurance, heartbreaking to see this.
CAR “INTIMACY” AT TIRE DUMP
There’s more happening in this shot than meets the eye. The people in the car were dropping off tires at the dump. So far so good, but the drone pilot confirmed that moments later, the whole dump started burning. And not only that, but the two people inside the truck are sharing a very intimate moment. If they only knew they were being watched…!
Privacy issues aside, it’s reassuring to know that drones can be so useful in helping out with public safety and crime prevention. Nothing like an extra set of eyes to let first responders know as early as possible of a fire or another public safety hazard.
Few natural disasters can rival a hurricane for sheer destructive power. Just look at what happened to Puerto Rico and Dominica when Hurricane Maria arrived. This photo is but a sample of the devastation the residents suffered. The pavement was literally torn up!
How fortunate that we are able to send drones in to make a first assessment of disaster areas even before it’s safe for people to be there. It helps with relief planning and resource allocation.
Wouldn’t you say this Roman Catholic church in Italy looks just a bit sinister? The altitude, the way it breaks through the clouds like some sort of mist-covered floating nightmare, it all adds up to one big scary mystery.
You just can’t beat Europe for creepy architecture. You sometimes just have to wonder what people were thinking when they designed these structures. Were they trying to keep us awake at night?
Sometimes a tour group gets lucky. These folks were visiting Mexico and taking a boat ride when a gray whale swam right up to them to say hi. Speaking for myself, I’d be to scared to pet it.
The awe-inspiring majesty of a giant whale is without a doubt one of the most unforgettable sights a person might experience in their lifetime. But to see one so up close is a whole other level.
In this photo, you see the aftermath of a terrible collision that occurred in 2007 in Australia. A cattle truck was involved, unfortunately leading to the death of many cows. Luckily, at least no humans were seriously injured.
Carnage on the highways is sadly all too common throughout the world. But what did those poor innocent little moo cows do to anyone? This whole situation is just too depressing for words.
FEARLESS ROCK CLIMBER
Now there is a real daredevil! I’m feeling queasy just from looking at this photo. I’m almost glad that I don’t even know the height of this insane climb.
I don’t know if this person is a man or a woman, but they’re braver than me.
This horrifying drone picture shows a ghastly collision on the I-5 in Los Angeles. It seems like a semi-trailer crossed the median strip and careened into oncoming traffic. Tragically, one person was killed, but it could have been so much worse.
I don’t know what drone was used to take this photo, but the hyper-realistic resolution and color make it seem almost more real than real. Death and destruction in technicolor.
Crazy scary. A humpback whale jumps out of the water and almost lands on top of a small pleasure boat. Just a few feet to the right, and all that would have been left of the boat would be splinters. This happened just off the coast at Santa Barbara, California. Many whale species migrate along the Pacific coast of North America every year between Alaska and Hawaii.
The boat is literally just a fraction of the whale’s size, just imagine the excitement, not to mention the bragging rights!
THE STATUE OF LIBERTY FROM ABOVE
I can’t imagine drone photography getting any better than this! The Statue of Liberty is the symbol of the greatness of America, as well as an awe-inspiring artistic masterpiece. But who has ever seen this stunning view of it before?
A new angle or a new perspective can turn the mundane into the exotic, and the exotic into the breathtaking. That is exactly what this drone photo has accomplished. I want more!
SAN ANDREA'S FAULT
This is probably the most famous crack in the Earth’s crust. It divides the state of California into two parts on two separate continental plates: the North American and the Pacific tectonic plates. This is why there are so many earthquakes in California. The fault stretches between San Francisco and Los Angeles.
The Earth has dozens of fault lines, but the San Andrea's is the most famous one for a few reasons. One is, that few are as strikingly clear as this one. In fact, most are at the bottom of the ocean. Also, most don't run right through the middle of major populated centers as this one does.
Another perfectly timed photo. It was taken just at the instant the lion noticed the drone flying too close for comfort in its enclosure and was about to attack. The King of the Savannah will tolerate no trespasser, even if the trespasser is an overgrown mechanical bumblebee!
People never get tired of wildlife photography. And drones have revolutionized this field possibly even more than any other. From documenting migrations to watching predators at work, drones put you in the midst of the action like never before.
This one-of-a-kind photo was taken where the mountains run into the sea. Apparently, the gulls got spooked by the drone and took out their frustration on both the vehicle and its poor operator.
Another example of perfect timing. The red-eyed gull screeching into the drone’s camera is something else. Funny? Scary? You decide!
What are we looking at in this photo taken in Bangladesh? A bit of a mystery. The figure on the balcony seems too slim for a human being, but if so, what is it? Talk about ominous...
I’m starting to get the idea that some people just want to creep out their neighbors. What is going on in their minds? Some sort of perverse pleasure in others’ discomfort I guess.
LITTLE DO THEY KNOW… SHARK!
Everything about this photo is perfect: the timing, the way it pulls you into the time frame, forcing you to imagine what happened right before and after the shot was taken. How could it get any better?
High five! That was such a killer wave! Um, wait, did someone say killer? That’s not a giant ferocious shark swimming right next to these two happy bikini-clad surfer girls is it? Why yes, I believe it is.
TWO CREEPS IN A FIELD
Picture this: you’re out flying your drone out in nature one day, and all of a sudden you run across these two freaks. Scary, dude. Run away, run away!
I suppose we could give these jokers the benefit of the doubt and assume it was Halloween or some sort of college stunt. Either way, kinda freaky.
THE KRAKEN HOLE (AERIAL VIEW)
From high up, the Kraken Hole, also known as the Glory Hole, looks like some sort of nightmarish vortex that will abduct unsuspecting victims and take them to the eternal depths of hell. But hey, no worries, right?
Amazingly, this is actually a man-made wonder. It’s an artificial spillway in a California reservoir, intended to prevent flooding in the event the reservoir becomes too full.
FIGURE BUILT OUT OF STONES
In the lovely rolling hills of England, a sinister shape is hiding in plain sight, assembled from stones lying around for thousands of years. What purpose could such a bizarre monument possibly serve, especially since its shape is only clear from overhead? Religious? Calling the mothership? Who’s to say?
The world is full of weird and mysterious stone monuments, from the pyramids to Stonehenge. There must be some sort of deep-seated human need for permanence being served by creating them.
Water has got to be the most intense primal force in nature. What you’re seeing is the aftermath of a river flooding after a rainstorm and simply washing away a section of the roadway.
Thankfully there were no people on that section of road just then.
I give up. I will never understand some people. You are SWIMMING. With SHARKS. Here’s an idea: how about you not do that. I wonder what the next few photos in this series showed.
I know, I know: What are the chances of getting bitten? You wanna know the answer? About a gazillion times higher than if you DON’T SWIM WITH SHARKS.
GIANT BIRD’S NEST
Seems like this is a giant nest of little birds* that they build atop a utility pole. I understand that such little birds building such enormous nests is somewhat unusual, so I consider myself lucky for having gotten to see this photo. But admit it: looks kinda sinister at first until you know what it is, right?
* I was gonna call it a giant birds’ nest, but I realized that could be misunderstood to mean that they were giant birds. So I fixed it! Clarity is your friend.
There’s always something new and surprising to see in nature, especially when you have drones flying all over the place to find the best shots. Case in point: a shark being surrounded by a school of little fish. Stunning.
Now that we’ve enjoyed the beautiful sight of this unforgettable photo.
Some guy followed his wife with his drone to catch her going to a parking lot to cheat on him. As she got in her lover’s car, she probably thought she was pretty clever, but she was no match for a jilted husband who was also a skilled drone pilot. Sad, but effective.
It’s a harsh world out there, and this is a classic example of using a drone for premeditated espionage. I mean, maybe she had it coming, but you gotta admit that this raises serious ethical and privacy issues.
Heart attack time! Does that unfortunate woman not realize that there is a giant hammerhead shark just a few feet away from her? I hope she got away safe. I wonder if the pilot managed to warn her in some way.
Sharks again. Sheesh. I gotta admit, drone footage of sharks in close proximity to humans is pretty darn compelling. Kinda grabs you by the throat, so to speak.
ON THE HUNT
This astonishing shot of a large bird of prey on the hunt was not the half-hearted work of an amateur. You need skill, patience, and practice (and yes, luck) if you want to capture images such as this. It wouldn’t come as a shock if the bird decided that the unwelcome drone was, in fact, its prey.
Who can help but be inspired by great birds of prey flaunting their power and skill? No wonder eagles, hawks, and falcons are symbols of all the virtues throughout the world. Plus, they’re beautiful.
All is not as it seems. Despite the bright colors of the drone photo, what you are seeing is a soccer player collapsing in the middle of a game. I hope he was ok.
The interplays of color and composition, of action and immobility, sport and pain are what help make this a timeless image. Looks professional to me.
CATCHING SOME RAYS
Isn’t tilting at windmills paradigmatic of insanity? Does chilling atop a wind turbine 200 feet in the air count? Sure, maybe he’s a professional doing some sort of maintenance or repair, but still. Come down, my friend. Come down.
Another beautifully composed shot. The blue sky and sea, the green fields, the astonishing subject. It all adds up to an unforgettable photograph.
BEAUTIFUL WHALE SPOUTING
In the annals of whale photography, this shot is one for the ages. Captured right at the moment of spouting, as the sunlight passing through the mist ejected by the whale forms a perfect rainbow.
Can you imagine trying to capture a shot like this without a drone? How would you even do it? Fly around the ocean in a helicopter? Inconceivable!
FOLLOW THE LEADER
Wow. This photo is definitely a highlight. An enormous whale is calmly following a little boat. It's true that people generally have little to fear from whales, but being so close to a creature so gigantic is inherently dangerous and unpredictable. Even a little accident could lead to a major tragedy.
If it were me in that boat, I have no doubt that my feelings would be split between excitement and thrill on one hand, and abject fear and panic on the other. But if I survived, it would certainly remain in my memory as one of the greatest experiences of my life.
Epic action shot! This duck literally flew right up to a drone in flight to say hello! Look at the expression on its face! Wanna bet the drone pilot was a bit freaked out by the unexpected visit?
The fun side of drone photography often involves surprising and candid wildlife shots. There’s not a human being alive who isn’t naturally drawn to such whimsical beauty.
WHEN DOGS ATTACK
Speaking of unexpected candid wildlife shots, here’s one for the ages! The operator was piloting his drone along the river when he overflew a dog playing in the water. The dog noticed the drone, and all of a sudden attacked it! That is one scary dog!
I wonder if the drone survived the encounter. Judging by the picture, it must have been a real close call. I can only imagine what those jaws and teeth would do to a flimsy little flying toy.
TRAFFIC IN CHINA
What a horror story. Can you imagine inching your way through traffic like this? Flying over it with a drone must have given the operator quite a feeling of freedom though!
Just try counting the lanes on this mega-highway, that will pass some time
RELAXING IN THE SHALLOW END
Looks like someone is having fun relaxing in the shallow tropical beach water. I hope she doesn’t mind being spied on by the drone operator. Privacy is definitely one of the big concerns in the exciting new world of drones.
A rule older than drones, older even than photography, is that eye candy sells! Ever seen a Greek statue? Yup. Human nature never changes.
DRONE CAPTURES ROBOTIC SHARK
Why is there even such a thing as a robotic shark? This image was captured by a drone pilot off the Atlantic coast of Florida. For some reason, it was being pulled behind a boat.
Thoughts? Scientific research; a prank; some sort of recreation or sporting equipment? Those are the possibilities that I can think of. Am I missing anything?
A FAMILY OF KILLER WHALES
Some drones are equipped for scientific exploration. One such captured this perfect overhead shot of a family of killer whales roaming the open ocean. It’s an outstanding image, a real keeper.
Imagine the patience it must take to send your drone over miles and miles of ocean. You’re looking at your screen and seeing nothing but water and more water until finally...you get the shot of a lifetime!
SWIMMING WITH THE FISHES
Swimming with the fishes...or a whale...or a whale shark. You know, like, whatever.* Kind of a freaky photo, though. I know it’s probably totally safe, but you won’t find me swimming with a monster like that. But you go ahead.
* Let’s just call it swimming with sea life and leave it at that. It would be almost worth getting into the water with that creature just to be able to show off this amazing photo forever.
Outstanding action shot! Is this a ray from one of the Earth's oceans, or is it a science fiction spaceship? You decide!
The camera caught the very moment the Mobula devil ray breached (flew out of the water). It’s an exceptionally lucky shot.
FISHERMEN AT WORK
This drone photo is a genuine work of art. You’re looking at a group of fishermen casting their net (that’s the huge greenish-blue object at the top) into the sea from their yellow fishing boat.
I’m not sure what they’re going to catch in such shallow water. You see some of the men are in the boat, while others are literally wading on the sandy bottom.
WHERE PLANES GO TO BE SALVAGED
It’s a graveyard...for airplanes! Thousands upon thousands of airplanes from the US military have been brought here when they were no longer needed for active service. Unfortunately it’s mostly off-limits to visitors, but if I’m not mistaken, you'll be dreaming about it tonight!
Known as the world’s largest airplane boneyard, it serves a number of functions. Some planes are stored in case they’re ever needed again. Others are sent there for repair. And others are disassembled for scrap and spare parts.
This outstanding drone photo shows a surprisingly dense school of huge sharks in the open sea. One thing that raises this picture above its peers is just how close the drone must have flown to catch this beautiful nature scene.
What in the world are so many sharks doing piling on top of one another? Is there a bunch of food just off to the side? What’s the strategy here? Sure doesn’t look very convenient for them.
Apparently, these two guys were just innocently out boating one day when they came across the recently deceased carcass of a whale floating on the water. So they stopped and checked it out. It’s a little sad, but such is the cycle of life.
We don’t know what was the whale’s cause of death. It could have been a predator such as a killer whale or shark, old age, disease, or it might have been caused by humans in some way (but I hope not).
Wild nature! The drone operator was expecting a nice nighttime cityscape but he ended up with something much more exciting. Have you ever seen so much lightning bursting out of a single thundercloud? I wonder if the drone’s circuitry got fried.
The awesome power of nature is not a force to be trifled with. I just can’t get enough pictures like this. When they are beautifully photographed, they are able to touch a very deep part of me. I guess you could call it inspiring.
CROCODILES LOVE BACON TOO
You’re probably thinking that you’re looking at a photo of a crocodile swimming away holding in its jaws an entire stolen pig. But actually...you’re right! And, um, could that possibly be a LEASH on the pig? What happened?
Forget sharks, man. I have a new all-time nightmare animal heavyweight champion. All hail the crocodile! At least with sharks, you’re safe as long as you stay out of the water.
SHARK FOR LUNCH
Was this the luckiest drone operator of all time? This has got to be one of the most effective illustrations of the power of nature. A killer whale eating a great white shark? That really happened?
Can you imagine the epic battle that must have taken place that resulted in the great white shark, a ferocious top predator, torn to pieces? Someone should explain to that killer whale the meaning of “top predator”!
PLANES FROM ABOVE
This lovely photo was taken by a drone while flying high above an airplane history exhibit, and you’re looking at World War II vintage airplanes down there. The angle virtually puts you in the pilot’s seat in the midst of a historical air battle.
Is it just me, or do aerospace museums bring out the inner child in everyone? The wide-eyed wonder is inspiring to see in an adult, and even more so in an actual (unadulterated!) child. Hard to be jaded and cynical when you’re surrounded by vintage aircraft!
THE DOUBLE DATE
Perfect timing and composition again as the overhead drone caught a moment in time. A pair of lovely women stretch out on the beach while a pair of stingrays just off shore can’t help but stare. And who can blame them?
I think we have a winner! Plus check out the blending colors and the symmetry of the composition. This is what photography is all about.
HAMMERHEAD UP CLOSE
Hammerheads are truly frightening creatures. I’m not sure I would even want my drone to get this close to one, so props to the obviously skilled operator for managing it. But in real life? The shark wouldn’t need to kill me; I’d drop dead of fright on the spot!
I’ve always considered hammerheads the scary clowns of the sea. They look so ridiculous, you can imagine them getting teased in fish school (fish school! Get it??) except they’re, you know, GIANT KILLER SHARKS!
BIRD’S NEST BIRD’S EYE VIEW
Here’s another perfect example of a beautiful photo that only a drone could have given us. The overhead view of an already high up bird’s nest gives us a perspective previous generations could not have imagined. And check out the exquisite detail in this picture!
Ok, help me out here. If storks bring babies to people, who brings storks their babies? Other storks? Maybe pigeons? Obviously, I need to brush up on my ornithology.
The only thing more awe-inspiring than the quality of this photo is the natural phenomenon it depicts. The halo surrounding this mountain is like something out of an oil painting. Sending a drone out into the wilderness to find these sights must have been quite a project!
Distant landscapes are often inaccessible, and when you can get to them, the angles and perspectives are often quite limited. Modern use of drones helps to solve both problems to stunning effect.
CUE THE JAWS THEME
Aaaand it’s heart attack time. Those are children floating in the water with their kickboards. Does nobody realize that they’re swimming in shark-infested waters? It will come to a relief to learn that no children were hurt to make this photograph.
You can tell me that sharks almost never attack until you’re blue in the face. They’re scary, period. And sometimes, they really are dangerous. Even deadly.
BLUE WHALE LUNGING FOR DINNER
Here we see a how a drone captured a gigantic blue whale at the very moment it’s charging forward and opening its cavernous mouth to swallow a swarm of tiny krill. Bon Appetit!
You know, there aren’t all that many blue whales. And it’s a very very big ocean. And they don’t even eat all that often, which is why when they do find a swarm of krill, they swallow tons at a time. So. How to reliably get such incredible documentary evidence? Drones, that’s how.
ON TOP OF THE WORLD
This awesome photo captures the moment when a mountain climber finally succeeded in scaling the summit. It’s absolutely magnificent and, if you suffer from vertigo, horrifying as well. But thank you to the brave climber for performing this stunt so we can enjoy the view vicariously.
One of the really cool touches in this photo is that it uses two drones, to let us see not only the main subject of the picture, but also how it was made. Meta.
GET OUT OF THE WATER
Again with the sharks? To they want me to never be able to fall asleep? Or to never get in the water again? Whatever it is, it’s working. You want me scared? I’m scared.
But at least it’s not a crocodile! Right?! Who’s with me? Now that I think about it, I wonder who would win a battle royale between a shark and a croc. Send out the drones!
FOREST IN THE WINTER
What a lovely overhead shot of a winter forest scene. Look how the vibrant green snowless trees are surrounded by snow-covered grassland. Very beautiful and just a little scary. This is about as good as landscape photography gets.
Here we see a shot that waiting a hundred years for drones to come around and capture it. The results are stunning, and the comment it makes about the synergy between technology and art is very exciting.
Crazy. How long did the drone operator have to scour the ocean before coming across this once-in-a-lifetime shot? You’re looking at a pack of sharks digging into their communal dinner. All I can say is that I’m glad it’s not me!
It’s the carcass of a humpback whale that these tiger sharks are feeding on. Plenty for everyone. I don’t know if the sharks were responsible for the whale’s death or if they were just scavenging. Sad about the whale either way.
Did you know that NASA moves space shuttles on rafts on the water? I sure didn’t. Seems kinda risky and dangerous to me, since that is one expensive piece of equipment. How much do you suppose it costs to ensure the passage against falling into the sea?
Is there anyone out there so jaded that they fail to get inspired by space exploration? Sadly, the space shuttle program is now a thing of the past, but hopefully something bigger and better will be created to replace it.
Somebody built a wall to separate a bit of the ocean into a calm swimming pool. The results are both beautiful and electrifying. The contrast between the stormy sea and the calm woman is a wonderful touch.
The photographer even went a couple steps farther with the awesome drone perspective and the perfectly planned framing.
BIRD OF PREY
You’re innocently flying your drone, taking lovely pictures of the countryside and before you know it...BAM! A hawk swoops in and attacks! Not fair, nature! I mean, I love birds of prey and all, but leave my precious drone alone!
The good news it that it wasn’t me that this happened to. So I get to just sit back and enjoy the comedy and entertainment value of a bird defending its turf from a flying toy robot.
WHALE SPOUTING WATER IN ACTION
This is an outstanding shot of a whale spiraling in the water while blowing bubbles to the surface. The drone captured it perfectly for our viewing pleasure.
It seems that the whale is performing a maneuver known as a bubble net. When it spots a school of prey, it surround them with bubbles, the lunges up the middle to devour them all! Dinner is served!
Lava has got to be one of the scariest of natural phenomena. One of the hottest things in nature, it’s hard not to imagine what it would do to me if I ever got too close. Not that there’s much chance of that, of course. I’m keeping my distance.
Any photo that shows a natural landscape along with some sort of example of the awesome power of nature is a guaranteed winner. And this picture certainly has it all. Well done to the drone pilot.
LOW FLYING AIRPLANE
OK, something seems a bit off here. Is this jet plane flying way too low, or is the parking lot way too close to the airport? Whatever it is, this does not seem like a safe situation to me.
Did you notice the airplane’s shadow on the parking lot? It’s the same size as the plane! That’s how you can tell how low it’s flying.
THE TUBBS FIRE, SANTA ROSA, CA
What a tragedy. When The Tubbs Fire started on Tubbs Lane in Santa Rosa, California in 2017, it quickly burned out of control. The result was more than 5000 buildings destroyed. This drone photo documents several city blocks having been wiped away by the fire.
Sadly, 22 people lost their lives in the fire, which also caused over a billion dollars in damage. On a positive note, thanks to modern technology including drones, it’s possible to enter extremely dangerous areas much more quickly than before in order to plan and implement assistance efforts.
What a crazy thing to happen right in the middle of a neighborhood. Freaky. I can’t help imagining: what if it was my house that got sucked into the bowels of the earth all of a sudden?
How does this happen? Incompetent construction? Earthquake? Flash flood? Maybe it’s a combination of factors. Either way, it’s horrifying.
SHAMOO FEASTING ON GREAT WHALE
This horrifying image captures the moment when a pod of killer whales decided to hunt, kill, and eat a giant whale. Not a pleasant sight, but a valuable document of nature’s fury, and the circle of life.
Still, I can’t help but be a little disappointed with these mean killer whales. I mean, shouldn’t whales stick together? It’s one thing to hunt fish, or even seals. But whales? Oh well, who am I to judge?
DOLPHIN IN TROUBLE
What we’re seeing here is apparently a dolphin desperately trying to escape a shark attack. It’s obviously already seriously injured, so I don’t know how much optimism is warranted as to whether it ever got away. A sad end for a noble creature.
The most effective drone photos are the ones that touch our emotions in some way. And it doesn’t always have to be positive. It’s ok to pull on our heartstrings from time to time.
A LANDING ACCIDENT
In this picture we see the aftermath of some sort of catastrophic accident on a runway. Clearly something went seriously wrong during the landing and the plane slid down the embankment. I sure hope nobody was seriously hurt. How scary.
Since the weather in this scene seems quite clear, I’m going to go out on a limb and say that there was a problem with the landing gear. Does anyone know if a plane can be brought back into service after an accident like this?
TALK ABOUT A NIGHTMARE
Suspend a line of hammocks high above a canyon and rent them out to sleepy daredevils? Sure, why not? Not for me, though. You couldn’t pay me enough. Apparently is like a waystation and all these people are on their way higher and higher.
Adrenaline junkies are a real thing I guess. Thrill seekers. Well, more power to them. They are an endless source of inspiration and entertainment, even if I have no desire personally to emulate them.
And here we see drone photo of an alligator swimming away after having stolen a cow. Yes, it is actually swimming while holding an ENTIRE COW in its mouth. And that’s today’s episode of Don’t Mess with Nature. And certainly not alligators.
Crocodiles and alligators stealing gigantic livestock? This is actually a thing? You mean, life isn’t hard enough, there’s not enough challenge trying to keep a farm profitable, so we have to watch out for giant prehistoric lizards coming out of the water and dragging our animals away?
A FAMILY OF WHALES
I can’t imagine there have been many times that a shot like this has been captured. A large group of giant whales have gathered all together and are all surfacing at the same time in very tight formation. You can bet that under the surface they are bumping and jostling.
I don't know if this happens a lot, but it’s sure the first time I’ve seen it. If I had to guess, I’d say that this is some sort of feeding strategy. The whales probably corralled a huge school of prey into a tight area and then converges to gobble them all up. Any other theories?
SWIMMING WITH THE SHARKS
Nope. Next. This is not the job for me. Presumably at least these are not particularly vicious sharks. At least, not to humans. But still. You can call me a coward. It’s ok, I’m not afraid. (Get it?)
But I’m glad someone is brave enough to swim in the middle of a school of giant carnivorous sharks. Otherwise, I would be robbed of this amazing photo. So, thank you Mr. Scuba Man, and thank you, Mr. Drone Operator!
SWIMMING WITH THE WHALE SHARKS
This high overhead shot shows people out for a swim alongside several gigantic whale sharks. These swimmers are pretty adventurous, getting in the water together with such enormous wildlife. Good for them.
For what it’s worth, even though whale sharks are sharks, and indeed the biggest fish in the world, they are gentle plankton eaters. So it’s not like swimming with great whites. But still, they’re so BIG.
This frightening drone photo documents an awesome 100 vehicle pileup caused by slippery snowy road conditions in Illinois. It began with the semi-trailers, but it didn’t end with them. Just look at them all. Can you imagine the horror of experiencing this?
I’m sure we all owe a debt of gratitude to all the first responders who must have worked through the night in freezing and dangerous conditions to get hundreds of people to safety. I salute you all for your dedication.
THE KRAKEN HOLE
This image was captured by a drone as it flew over Lake Berryessa, a man-made reservoir created by the Monticello Dam in Napa Valley, California. During the abundant spring rains, the lake is in danger of overflowing and flooding, so they open up this magical-looking spillway that safely releases the extra water to the valley below. The giant vortex looks as though it will kill us all by releasing the mythical Kraken any second, but it’s really all just science and engineering. So no need to panic.
It’s like the perfect marriage of art and engineering. And nothing better than a drone to give you the clearest possible perspective. Makes me be happy to be human!