A Trip to Melbourne Zoo

Last weekend I was teaching a One on One at the Melbourne Zoo. It was the first time I have done one there, but I hope it isn’t the last. It was nice to wonder around and help someone learn how to use their camera.

The day was overcast, it was almost perfect weather for photographing the animals. Sunshine can make it a lot harder. When it is overcast the light is better, it is defused, so you don’t get all the sharp shadows and strong contrasts between light and shadow.

It was a great morning and we got lots of photos of animals that I haven’t been able to get before. The lions were great. Every other time I have been there they were lying down in a spot where you could hardly see them.

I know that a lot of people don’t like zoos, but I have to say that while I think it is sad they are locked up, they are also doing a great job to highlight the problems of their species. If people can see the animals, hear the story, they develop an understanding and want to help protect them. They feel a connection. I think the animals in the zoo are helping their own kind. I like the way the zoo does demonstrations with the animals, but also use the moment to educate the people watching as to where the animals have come from and what danger than might be in.

The seal show is a good example. They only have seals that cannot be put back into the wild, for whatever reason. When they do the seal show they talk about something to the audience that will try and help the environment of those in the wild. At the moment they are doing a lot about balloons and explaining to everyone how bad balloons are for the animals in the ocean. You see people letting off helium balloons all the time, but no one considers what happens to them. They don’t just float off into space, they go in the storm drains, or directly to the ocean and the animals and fish choke on them. It is a great way to educate people.

It was a good trip and I enjoyed it. I will have to remember it as a place to go in the future.

20 Responses

  1. The Zoo looks so interesting and your words are amazing that make this post more beautiful. Keep up the good work.

  2. maxinesimmonds

    I really like zoo photos. It’s always good to remind people what is happening in the wild and, I’m always bemused how much effort we (or I) go to to hide the enclosure fences. These are lovely examples, thanks for sharing.

  3. Beautiful images Leanne … I also agree with you about zoos. I loathe seeing those beauties locked up. But if it means helping more animals and highlighting problems then it can’t be a bad thing.

  4. Super photos, as usual. And, yes, I’ve found the overcast days to be better for photographing the animals. They are not so “washed out.” I share your sentiments about animals in zoos, but you are right: they do help us understand so much about them and their needs. Great shot of the lion. The one in our local zoo always is asleep when we visit!

  5. What a great idea. For some people going to a zoo may be their only chance of seeing such animals

  6. I’ve always loved zoos. I remember as a child going to the zoo in every city we ever visited. On Halloween this year I took my granddaughter to the Toronto Zoo. We had a great time and it was the perfect day to see the Pandas.

  7. Great gallery and so essential to remind people about how harmful the balloons are.

  8. Some people don’t like zoos but as long as the animals are treated well, I’ve always enjoyed the opportunity to photograph species I’ll never see in the wild.

    . . . also reminds me of my favorite joke . . .

    I went to the zoo the other day; there was only one animal in it and it was a dog.

    It was a Shitzu.

Talk to me, it is too quiet.