The worst place to shoot wildlife photography

What is it?  What’s the worst place to shoot wildlife photography?  If you’re thinking the zoo, then you’d be dead wrong.  The truth is that the worst place to shoot wildlife photography is where most people would think is the best place to shoot wildlife photos.

Confused?  Allow me to explain.  Whenever I teach wildlife photography workshops, the students always ask where they can plan a trip so they can do some wildlife photography.  They think the optimal location for wildlife photography is deep in the woods or dozens of miles into the Everglades.

If you have ever been in these extremely rustic areas, you know that animals are significantly more wary of people in the burbs than they are in inhabited areas.

It often takes considerable work to get within 50 yards of a deer in the mountains, but it is common to get that close when in a public place like a state park camping ground.  The critters are accustomed to seeing people in these spots, so they aren’t alarmed by photographers.

Obviously, the principle applies to more than deer.   Although Florida is a main attraction for bird photographers, I have found that here in Florida some of my favorite spots to shoot birds are at the most commonly visited beaches.

This isn’t always true, but if you enjoy wildlife photography… consider giving this technique a second thought.  I bet your backyard or city park is full of animals that you would never have imagined live there and allow you to approach.

To learn more about wildlife photography, check out my eBook, “Improve Your Wildlife Photography.”

Comments from the I.P. Community

  1. Sean Allen says

    Zoos would be a great place for wildlife photography if it wasn’t for all the fences & cages. Dang fences & cages make it difficult to get a decent picture without some part of the fence or cage in the way of your picture taking.

    • says

      I hear ya, Sean. But if you use a large aperture (under 4.5), stand right up next to the fence or as close as possible, and wait until the animal is far away from the fence, you usually won’t even see the fence. The camera will shoot right through it.

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