A Day at BioParc

Joined
May 12, 2019
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It's winter in Valencia, which means daytime temperatures are about 10-16C. Today was sunny and crisp, and with COVID raging across Spain, I was one of maybe 10 people to visit the zoo this afternoon. It was quiet, and the animals were relaxed. I took my time and tried to capture the unique personalities of animals who spent the day mostly alone. Some were taken behind thick glass. Some were quite close. All were taken at the end of the day when the sun was golden and low.

The ring-tailed Lemurs are in an open area with a path for people to walk through. There is no glass or fence. They surround you, walk past you, sit next to you. Today, I was alone in their area and just stood silently as twenty strolled around me.
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The elephants had just eaten and came to a part of their enclosure where they bathe in sand.
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The apes share common areas but are mostly behind glass, except for the chimps.
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This Hippo is in a pool with thick glass where you can watch them swim by.
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I found this Hyena standing 3 meters away from me, and we were alone for 20 minutes.
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Joined
May 12, 2019
Messages
1,117
Great set Steve. I hate zoos, but you have done a great job with these portraits.
Zoos irk me too. The BioParc in Valencia provides much more space than many zoos I've been to but of course the enclosures and constant noises from humans stress the animals constantly. Also, animals in the wild eat all day, but humans insist on feeding them once or twice a day. So the environment is unnatural and it seems only the most social animals - elephants, hippos- do reasonably well. Still if not for zoos, many endangered animals would have little protection against extinction. And as a photographer who aches to return to Africa, this place is great to practice while COVID keeps us grounded.
 

demiro

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Beautiful shots Steve. You've captured what looks to me like sadness in the eyes and expressions of some of the simians.

I agree with your take on zoos. A necessary evil at this point, as I don't see any chance that we become better stewards of this planet any time soon.
 
Joined
May 12, 2019
Messages
1,117
Beautiful shots Steve. You've captured what looks to me like sadness in the eyes and expressions of some of the simians.

I agree with your take on zoos. A necessary evil at this point, as I don't see any chance that we become better stewards of this planet any time soon.
I agree that our progress as nature's stewards is far too slow and most of the animals are bored and sad. I was there on a day with almost no visitors and the park was unusually quiet. Still the evidence of compounded stress was in all the eyes of the animals.
 
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