Bronze 2021 / People / Culture (Non-Pro)

Portraits of The Eagle Hunters of Mongolia

  • Photographer
    Shobha Gopinath
  • Prizes
    Bronze in People/Culture

The unique ancient tradition of eagle hunting is still preserved in Mongolia, where a female chick is taken from its nest and nurtured and trained by the eagle hunter to hunt for small animals in the vast open steppe. These birds become so much a part of the eagle hunter; their relationship is nothing short of extraordinary. They believe that their souls and that of their eagles are intertwined and an inextricable bond is formed; and so when the birds are released into the wild after about 7 years, it is a profoundly wrenching experience.