Derrick Hamrick grew up in Raleigh, NC and currently lives 10 miles from his birth place. In the beginning he was an avid bird watcher and regularly impressed the older members with his skills and patience.
During his 25th year, he purchased a camera and a couple of lenses, which latter proved to be the foundation for his life’s work! Derrick will tell you, “I’ll get the shot, no matter what it takes, as long as it doesn’t disturb the wildlife”!. Larry Early, former editor of the Wildlife In NC Magazine said, “Derrick will go to the ends of the earth to get a shot“!
Derrick once spent 7 days in a pit blind he had dug, in hopes a coyote would come to the bait, it did. The blind was only large enough to sit and lay down in, and the only 24/7 view was a couple of small openings straight ahead. He once had his lens hood bitten by an alligator at water level while photographing from a cage he had built. On another occasion, he built a 12 ft long cat walk out from the tree to have better background control on a Pileated Woodpecker that was nesting 70 feet up.
Derrick placed 1st in the Bird Behavior category in 1996 with the prestigious BBC Wildlife Contest. He has won so many first place prizes in nationally sponsored wildlife photo contests, that he rarely enters these days. After all, how many pairs of binoculars and spotting scopes does one need. His photo credits are global, his determination immense and his passion second to none! Derrick has been slow to go digital, and the Pro-Tour will be his first real encounter away from film.