February 08



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Cheetah 6




I've been visiting Wild Animal Park for decades and tucked over near the African section is a natural area for cheetahs.  The only problem is that most of the time, I've never seen any cheetahs.  Remember this is an animal park and not a zoo so seeing some animals requires timing and a little luck.  I suspect the animals spend a lot of time at Cheetah Run, where they'll run a few hundred yards in front of visitors, for an extra fee of course.  Wild Animal Park recently opened a new lion exhibit and you are guaranteed to see lions who are often quite active. 


The Wild Animal Park is going through a major expansion and the entire park is beginning to look more zoo-like as opposed to wild park-like. This is a problem if you want to capture images that look like they were taken in a wild setting.  Fences, roads, trucks, busses, people, etc all crowd the background of your images.  It's difficult enough to capture animals in a decent stance, but then you have to be mindful of all the unwanted elements in the background and try to select an angle that avoids them.


 The image above was taken with a prosumer 12 megapixel digital SLR in between tour busses.  The lens used was a 200-400 F4 with outstanding optics.  It's really a drag hauling around this oversized lens, relative to the 80-400, but its optical capabilities make it worth carrying around.


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