Lassi Rautiainen is considered to be Finland’s premier photographer of wildlife and a pioneer in photo tourism. His first foray into the field came when he began photographing bears in 1978. Eventually, he moved on to different subjects, including wolverines and wolves, and he started to become more recognized amongst his peers.
As he slowly built up his portfolio, aspiring local photographers took note of his work and began to take more interest in photographing the animals of the area. That interest eventually spread even further and today, photographers from all over the world travel to Finland to capture these magnificent creatures with their cameras.
Lassi has always been fascinated by the local animals. He takes pride in the fact that people are now taking an interest in them instead of dismissing them as vicious wild creatures.
During one of his expeditions out into the wild, Lassi managed to photograph something that no one else has ever seen in the wilderness of Finland — an unlikely duo consisting of a bear and a young wolf.
When he first saw the two together, he assumed that they had randomly encountered each other in the wild. After observing how they interacted, however, he realized that there was something much more to this story.
They did everything together as a team. They shared resources and meals, and even hunted together. Lassi watched for days as the two animals traveled and surveyed the land as companions.
“No one can know exactly why or how the young wolf and bear became friends,” said Lassi in an interview with the Daily Mail.
“I think that perhaps they were both alone, and they were young and a bit unsure of how to survive alone.”
“It seems to me that they feel safe being together, and so every evening they met up for their dinner.”