A group of us from the West Texas Photographic Society took a short field trip to the Abilene Zoo this past Saturday. There was a bit of wind, but there were a lot of clouds, which made the light nice and soft even - perfect for photography. I've been to the zoo a number of times over the last six years, and it always surprises me that we have as nice a zoo as we have in Abilene. And with the recent passage of a city bond and the consequent influx of another million dollars for zoo renovation, it's only destined to get better.
We were told upon entering that at 10:00, zoo personnel would be taking one of the camels on a walk around the zoo and that it would start in front of the lion pen. We weren't all that interested in the camels, but ended up in front of the lions at the appointed time nonetheless. The highlight of the morning was was watching the behavior of the lions when the camel appeared. In fact, before we even saw the camel, the lions came alive. They knew something was coming, and it was like someone rang the dinner bell. They absolutely came alive, and with desperate intensity, walked to the edge of their pen and stood at alert. The image above shows the intensity of the stare of the male simba. Lions are so majestic and intense when they're on alert.
Below are a few of the rest of my favorite images from the morning, the first a close-up of the lion's massive paws.