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DPChallenge Forums >> Photography Discussion >> Backlash from a Wildlife Photo?
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07/31/2006 06:25:57 PM · #1
I've had the good fortune to be able to shoot at Pug-Mark Park twice now, and have come away with several images that I'm very proud of (for me, anyway). I put a couple on a different website that I visit occasionally, mostly to get feedback and for the picture to compete in their daily photo contests. One of the pictures I posted was this one:

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which I've titled (both here and at the other site) "Mmmm...Photographer...My Favorite!" I titled it that purely as a humor attempt because of him licking his chops.

Imagine my surprise when I find this comment on my picture this morning:

"Good clarity and color in this image. A bit too center-middle. But, overall a good image. Unfortunately, the image is wrecked by the accompanying text. You may have already figured out my dislike for zoo animal images presented as if they were captured in the wild. Makes it ten times worse when the photographer claims imminent danger and risk from capturing the shot. Truth be told, the animal in danger and fear here is the tiger. Since you have not told us this image was captured in an accredited facility, we don't know if the level of care offered to this confined animal met humane veterinary standards."

I replied to him so he could know exactly where the image was taken...this is my reply, verbatim:

"This image (as well as my other tiger images) was captured at a rescue facility in McKinney TX (Pug-Mark Park; //jazzdiver.com/pugmarkpark/index.htm and the animals there are treated with the utmost care. I can assure you that he is not in danger (nor are the other two tigers in care at the facility) and my choice of title was simply a humorous choice, being that I was really close to the tiger and he was licking his chops after just waking up and getting a drink of water. I am not aware of your dislike of zoo animal images presented as if they were captured in the wild, and I did not intend for this image offend anyone. I, unfortunately, do not have the opportunity to photograph animals like this in the wild so I do the best I can with what I have."
[COLOR="Magenta"]
He replied again with:[/COLOR]

"First of all, I love wildlife photos from zoos and aquariums, if the hosting facility is given credit for providing the opportunity to the photographer. It is not too cool to present an image as if it was captured in the wild... denying the hosting facility the credit it is due. There are a lot of very fine zoos and aquariums in this country and there are some horrible menageries. Here is a list of accredited facilities in TX. //www.aza.org/FindZooAquarium/index.cfm?page=zoostate&st=TX

I don't see McKinney,TX listed as having a zoo with accreditation. Please let me know if you have information indicating this is a good place for animals.
"

So...I can't understand what the problem is, but I've obviously offended his delicate sensibilities. I don't know this guy from Adam, though linking to his website I see that he's a landscape and wildlife photographer (of the real kind, not zoos, obviously). I guess he feels I should know who he is and more about the protocol and etiquette of posting wildlife shots.

My question is this... did I do something wrong? Are we breaking some weird unwritten photographer's code by trying to capture images of these cats in a facility that might not be accredited, and by capturing images of them appearing to be in the wild instead of in a cage? Am I being overly sensitive? I just don't understand what the problem could be...or maybe it's just PMS and I'm overly emotional right now. ;)
07/31/2006 06:29:13 PM · #2
I would just forget about it. There are billions of people in this world so why worry about this one person.

Nice photo though!
07/31/2006 06:32:12 PM · #3
Originally posted by dleach:

I would just forget about it. There are billions of people in this world so why worry about this one person.

Nice photo though!

I agree. Each person has their own particular vision of how the world should be, but this guy seems over the edge. I would not worry too much about him.

Barbara
07/31/2006 06:32:52 PM · #4
Don't worry about that guy, The tigers and lions are Pug-Mark park are happier than any zoo animal I have ever seen ;)

' . substr('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_portfolio/17851/thumb/349356.jpg', strrpos('//images.dpchallenge.com/images_portfolio/17851/thumb/349356.jpg', '/') + 1) . 'see this one is smiling :)

Message edited by author 2006-07-31 18:33:37.
07/31/2006 06:33:25 PM · #5
Ignore him, by answering the emails you are just feeding him. He will disappear and find someone else to irritate.
07/31/2006 06:33:47 PM · #6
Unless you are specifically claiming that you took these images in the wild, which you are not, his opinions are based solely on his own misassumptions, not on anything you have done.

Whilst HE may prefer all such images shared in any environment to provide accreditation to the place in which they were taken this isn't a universal law or even a universal practice.

And your title is clearly humourous! That he tells you off for pretending to be in danger is just infantile on his part.

Ignore him! He's a <<insert your choice of insult here>>!!
07/31/2006 06:35:04 PM · #7
- Anal retentive.
- Jealousy/Envy.
- High on the Horse.
- High on something.

Just let it be. If he's soooooo concerned about the poor kitty and a zoo's accreditation let him go and check it out. It's not worth your time OR your worry.
07/31/2006 06:35:49 PM · #8
Thanks Laurie for this welcome bit of humor. At least i found the his comment and subsequent reply funny. I know you didn't post this for giggles but it worked for me!

mark

edit: Please keep an open dialogue with him and continue to post his responses. I'll mark this thread "watch" for sure. :)
07/31/2006 06:36:05 PM · #9
Originally posted by laurielblack:

My question is this... did I do something wrong?


Yes, you replied to a nut.
07/31/2006 06:38:33 PM · #10
Don't worry about it. There are several (read many) places that have tigers that .. well they are not well cared for (read where mug had too turn down TWENTY FIVE unwanted tigers in ONE YEAR), on the other hand the only hope this magnificant species has for survival is a LOT of places finding homes and keeping the genepool as diverse as can be.

There are some zoo's which restrict if you can post photos for commerical purposes. Quite frankly there is no way I would want to get close to any of the endangered species outside of very protected conditions. I don't want wild tiger/bears/elephants/etc... getting used to being around people. It is just too dangerous ... for them.

Message edited by author 2006-07-31 18:43:33.
07/31/2006 06:42:16 PM · #11
I had a carefully worded post.. that all together had more words than all of the other posts, and they all say it better. It's a great shot, and don't let this guy bring ya down.
07/31/2006 06:49:25 PM · #12
Once again, I will play devil's advocate and throw out some food for thought:

In days gone by, zoos were cruel places where animals where kept in concrete cells - far too small and completely unnatural. Animals in those conditions must surely be unhappy.

Thankfully, most zoos aren't like that anymore, but some places ARE still like that.

Some people have a genuine, deep concern for animals. They may be willing to enjoy a photo, or even support a photographer/cause/facility when they KNOW the animal is taken very good care of, but don't want to be part of any cruelty.

For those caring individuals this is important, and perhaps they don't deserve to be mocked for their conscience and attitude.
07/31/2006 06:51:32 PM · #13
Originally posted by Beetle:

Once again, I will play devil's advocate and throw out some food for thought:

In days gone by, zoos were cruel places where animals where kept in concrete cells - far too small and completely unnatural. Animals in those conditions must surely be unhappy.

Thankfully, most zoos aren't like that anymore, but some places ARE still like that.

Some people have a genuine, deep concern for animals. They may be willing to enjoy a photo, or even support a photographer/cause/facility when they KNOW the animal is taken very good care of, but don't want to be part of any cruelty.

For those caring individuals this is important, and perhaps they don't deserve to be mocked for their conscience and attitude.


While you ahve a point, Laurie specifically stated that the palce where she took the pictures are NOT one of those palces that abuses animals. SHe even provided a link.
07/31/2006 06:52:16 PM · #14
But if you look carefully at lauries photo, you can see the beautiful animal is not in a concrete cage. His coat looks healthy, and he is obviously not sick or abused. I think it would be obvious if he lived in unhealthy conditions.

Barbara
07/31/2006 06:53:28 PM · #15
Originally posted by Beetle:

Some people have a genuine, deep concern for animals. They may be willing to enjoy a photo, or even support a photographer/cause/facility when they KNOW the animal is taken very good care of, but don't want to be part of any cruelty.


Which is exactly what I am doing when I pay to photograph these cats and support their care.

Originally posted by Beetle:

For those caring individuals this is important, and perhaps they don't deserve to be mocked for their conscience and attitude.


I'm not mocking anyone, I asked a legitimate question.
07/31/2006 06:56:17 PM · #16
Originally posted by pidge:


While you ahve a point, Laurie specifically stated that the palce where she took the pictures are NOT one of those palces that abuses animals. SHe even provided a link.

Yes, and I'm glad about that, but the person who asked her about it didn't know about the place.
I'm not quite sure what to make of the last bit :I don't see McKinney,TX listed as having a zoo with accreditation. Please let me know if you have information indicating this is a good place for animals." , but I didn't like to see him called a nutcase just because he cares.

I had never thought about that aspect (naming the zoo for that reason), but I think it isn't a bad idea, and I commend him for trying to find out and possibly raise awareness of animals in (possible) trouble.
07/31/2006 06:57:45 PM · #17
Originally posted by laurielblack:


I'm not mocking anyone, I asked a legitimate question.

Yes, Laurie, I understand that, and my reply was aimed only at people who think he is a nutcase.
07/31/2006 07:02:45 PM · #18
If he had such concerns he could easily have asked much more neutrally where the image was taken and whether it had said accreditation. Instead he chose to lambast the photographer for claiming it had been taken in the wild (which she didn't).

Having a genuine concern is fine. Jumping to conclusions and posting them in such a rude way on someone else's image is not. In my opinion.
07/31/2006 07:10:26 PM · #19
Kavey, you're absolutely right - he could have presented his concerns in a better way.
07/31/2006 07:18:32 PM · #20
I think he is a nutcase.
07/31/2006 08:13:05 PM · #21
I too think he's a few cards shy of a full deck. You mention that it is NOT a zoo but a rescue facility, but he keeps saying it's not listed in his zoo directory. *shrug* maybe he just needs to read for comprehension and not just whatever it is he's reading for.

In all honesty...ignore him. The photo is wonderful and that's all that matters at this time. You didn't hurt the animal and it's being treated well.
07/31/2006 08:23:47 PM · #22
There are at least four places that take in big cats such as lion, tigers, mountain lions as well as monkies and other non-native wildlife all within 70 miles of San Antonio texas. One is only about a mile away, really within the city limits. I know of two within San Antonio alone. Many of these animals were saved from circus, university, private collectors and zoos where they were not being taken care of. Not too many years ago, Texas had a thriving African Wildlife hunting business. For a few thousand dollars anyone could come to Texas to shoot these same lions and tigers. The law changed now to protect them. I'm sure some are still killed. Is it more humain to have them in these sanctuaries or put them in a cage and have a hunter (notice I did not say sportsman) shoot them from twenty feet away as they walk out of the cage? Indeed they are not funded nearly enough to give the animals complete care and comfort but much better than a trophy head on a wall.
07/31/2006 08:25:05 PM · #23
I am an employ of a zoo. First of all, just by looking at the place you can tell that they care about the animals, it is not a zoo that people pay to get into, it is a wildlife rescue reserve, and obviously they were REUSCUED, to be givin a good home. Secound of all, whether or not the zoo is AZA accredited has nothing to do with the zoo and how they treat there animals. It is a very political orgainization, and have done a lot of things to zoos in America that people are not happy with. Some of the finest zoos in America are not accredicted, including the world renound San Diego Zoo and Wild Animal Park, witch is considered the best zoo in the world. So yes rescue facilities can be accredited, but the¥ do not always want to get involved with the politics involved. THis person obviously knows nothing about zoos, or the way they are run. They just think that they are suppirior because they "care" about the animals. All I have to say to them, is go join PETA, and throw some blood on some fur coats. DO NOT LISTEN TO THEM, AND DO NOT FEEL BAD YOU DID ABSOLUTLY NOTHING WRONG!!!!!!!
07/31/2006 08:29:25 PM · #24
See, you really should have just deleted it.....:-)
07/31/2006 08:33:29 PM · #25
Originally posted by sea2c:

- Anal retentive.
- Jealousy/Envy.
- High on the Horse.
- High on something.

Just let it be. If he's soooooo concerned about the poor kitty and a zoo's accreditation let him go and check it out. It's not worth your time OR your worry.


Well said. Shake it off, lots of jerks in the photography world !

kopa21
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