I am having a lot of fun taking photographs of animals at the zoo. This little side hobby forces you to slow down and be observant, which makes it feel more like a treasure hunt. This past weekend I got a pic of a lemur, which makes me feel like I hit the jackpot. The monkeys seem to take the most patience to photograph because they are always moving, with lizards being the absolute easiest. I would put aquarium fish as the hardest to photograph correctly given their constant movement and low light situation where flash washes everything out and a long exposure makes it blurry. I’ve not really tackled that one yet and think perhaps video is the best way to capture them. We will hopefully visit the Newport Aquarium soon, which is supposed to be one the better aquariums in the country, to test out my hypothesis. Believe it or not, although it is very close to us I’ve only been there maybe twice.
We are blessed to have a family pass to the Cincinnati Zoo that enables us to get there an hour early before the park opens and the regular crowds get in. So far my experience with zoos has been to get there early for a more leisurely experience and to really see the animals active. By the afternoon, especially in humid weather, most animals lay down to take a nap. Cool mornings are the best bet. I’ve always felt zoos didn’t offer much in the way of experience because all you do is see them, however, when the animals are active you can hear them as well and the mornings are best. Listening to two snow leopards argue with each other over who was closest to the door (I have amazing video of one pawing the glass where my son stood) and listening to a hippo grunt both this past weekend was a terrific experience.
We are still jazzed up about our experience to the Columbus Zoo and are beginning to plan a second trip hopefully later in the fall when we have a free Saturday. Until then, we will probably hop up to the Cincinnati Zoo on a few Saturday mornings and I’ll try to capture a few more animals in the process.