Chapter 13. The National Zoo

The National Zoo

Detail of a western tiger salamander in the National Zoo's Amazonia exhibit. Taken at ISO 1600, f/4, 1/50 second with a 50mm lens.

Why It's Worth a Photograph

The National Zoo, part of the Smithsonian Institution, is best known for its three giant pandas: Tian Tian, Mei Xiang and their cub, Tai Shan. However, the National Zoo is much more than just a place where you can see pandas and elephants. It is essentially a specialized university that focuses on being a leader in the studies of animal care, science, education, and sustainability. There's so much to see that a photographer could spend weeks here. The zoo's peaceful atmosphere and creative layout make for hours of exploration.

Where Can I Get the Best Shot?

You can take great photographs inside the National Zoo from many locations. The following sections highlight some options.

The best locations from which to photograph the National Zoo: (A) African Savanna, (B) Amazonia, (C) Asia Trail, (D) Asian Elephants, (E) Bird House, (F) The Great Ape House and The O Line, (G) Great Cats, (H) Invertebrates, and (I) Small Mammal House.

Figure 13.1. The best locations from which to photograph the National Zoo: (A) African Savanna, (B) Amazonia, (C) Asia Trail, (D) Asian Elephants, (E) Bird House, (F) The Great Ape House and The O Line, (G) Great Cats, (H) Invertebrates, and (I) Small Mammal House.

African Savanna

If there's any place in the zoo that makes you want to wear a pith helmet and talk about your near-death experience with a lion in an East African savanna, ...

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