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To view a slideshow of the CAZoos Birds click SLIDESHOW
After my experience with photographing the birds of Discovery Cove I developed an appreciation of the bird collections in zoos. Even though they are in captivity instead of in the wild, this venue had a number of attractions:
1. Many of the birds were from all corners of the world. It would take years of traveling to cover them all. These collections exposed me to a fascinating variety of different birds.
2. Many were beautiful exotic species and the resulting photos were magnificent examples of ‘The Beauty of Birds."
3. It is possible to get the close-ups that I love and that are often difficult to get in the wild.
4. Many zoos have walk-in aviaries, eliminating the problem of wire fences between the photographer and the bird. Even when the birds are in cages, if they are sitting some distance from the fence the wire is often so out of focus that it is virtually invisible. In some cases I have removed the back fence with Photoshop. Photographing birds in zoos is often just as challenging as in the wild.
Over a 3-week period I had the opportunity to photograph the birds of the LA, Santa Barbara and San Diego Zoos. The highlights were:
LA Zoo Goffin’s & Salmon Crested Cockatoo, Andean Condor, Sarus Crane & Black-crowned Crane, Harpy Eagle, Abyssinian Ground Hornbill, Chestnut-Marbled Toucan, Ross’s & White-crested Turaco, Cape & King Vulture, and White-headed Buffalo Weaver.
Santa Barbara Zoo California Condor, 4 different Cockatoos, Rhinocerus Hornbill, Blue and Gold Macaw, Indian Roller, Black Swan, Toco Toucan, Ruppell's Griffon Vulture, and others
San Diego Zoo Yellow-crested & Sulfur Crested Cockatoo, California Condor, Chilean Flamingo, Rhinoceros Hornbill, Scarlet Ibis, Humbolt Penguin, Golden & Palawan Peacock Pheasant, Blue-crowned Pigeon, African Openbill Stork, Black Swan, Toco Toucan, Livingston Turaco, Ruppell’s Griffon Vulture. Yellow-naped woodpecker and others.
San Francisco Zoo. Eurasian Eagle Owl, Great Hornbill, Magellanic Penguin, Wladrapp Iris, Haadada Ibia.African Open-billed Stork.
Living Desert Zoo in Palm Desert, CA. Laughing Kookuberra photos and video.
I was especially pleased with the California Condor. Sally and I once traveled a hair-raising dirt road in search of photos of the California Condor hoping for a speck in the sky. The Santa Barbara and San Diego Zoos allowed great close-ups of these remarkable and endangered birds.
Together there were a total of approximately 100+ new species.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Many species pages are placed in a common capitalized folder with the number of species in parentheses (n) such as COCKATOOS (4), DOVES & PIGEONS (8), etc . When a given FOLDER is opened a fine line appears at the bottom of the light blue section of the web page with the different species in that group shown below the line. Click on each to view photos of the species.
ALSO REMEMBER: WHEN YOU ARE ON THE INDIVIDUAL PAGES, TO SEE THE PHOTOGRAPHS ENLARGED, DOUBLE CLICK THE FIRST PHOTO AND PROGRESS BY CLICKING "NEXT."
Acknowledgement to Wikipedia for systemics and other features.