Phony wildlife photos proliferate in magazines

3:18 p.m. on March 5, 2010 (EST)
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This thread is for comments on the article "Phony wildlife photos proliferate in magazines"

Among other outdoor organizations I belong to is the Audubon Society. Their excellent magazine, Audubon, has an article in the March-April 2010 issue about the extensive use of phony wildlife photos. I had been vaguely aware that many wildlife photos, movies, and TV programs were staged, including some very famous movies, but I had not been aware of how pervasive it is. A wild, non-captive lion, ...

Full article at http://www.trailspace.com/blog/2010/03/05/phony-wildlife-photos.html

3:55 p.m. on March 5, 2010 (EST)
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Thrown into a river and over a waterfall? That's horriffic. Are there not repercussions for such treatment of captive animals?

5:25 p.m. on March 5, 2010 (EST)
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The Audubon article says that some of the shows like Wild Kingdom have gotten fines of several hundred thousand dollars. Some of the game farms have been shut down as well for reasons ranging from mistreatment to apparently selling animals to private individuals to "hunt" and kill them to get a "perfect" trophy to hang on the wall. One of the more horrific stories in the article was an incident staged for a Disney movie many years ago to show that lemmings will commit suicide by streaming over a cliff - the captured lemmings (schoolchildren were paid to catch them) were apparently forcibly tossed over the cliff. Note that Disney has not allowed such practices for films and video that they produce or buy from independents for a number of years now.

By the way, if you click on the photo in my article, you will note the grass in the lion's mane and numerous scars from fights with other lions - he isn't a "pretty boy".

5:35 p.m. on March 5, 2010 (EST)
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I don't know the prevalence of the practice now, but several years ago, when I still fantasized at times that I might take up wildlife photography as a money-making hobby (as opposed to a pure financial drain), I became greatly dispirited at finding that an overwhelming majority of the "wild"-life photos one saw were instead of captive animals such as you describe. The editorial mandate for certain aesthetic values made it very difficult to compete by using only images of truly wild critters. Not that it can't be done, and it may be less difficult now, but that's the way it is/was. I never had sufficient talent anyway, but such practices made it even harder, since I was always after images of the truly wild and free creature.

I'm very glad to hear that many outlets are seeking to use more authentic photos--that is, photos of authentically wild wildlife.

6:02 p.m. on March 5, 2010 (EST)
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What kind of yuppie creapball would want a "perfect" trophy...that's just sick.

What Disney films are we talking about here?

6:08 p.m. on March 5, 2010 (EST)
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Snopes had this:
http://www.snopes.com/disney/films/lemmings.asp

That's just incredible...

8:40 p.m. on March 5, 2010 (EST)
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In Disney's defense (something I can't recall saying before), the rather disturbing lemming incident occurred 52 years ago in 1958.

Bill, do you have dates or other data on the mountain lion reference? I couldn't find a reference for it.

9:09 p.m. on March 5, 2010 (EST)
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I think this is what Gandhi meant when he said western civilization would be a good idea.

10:31 p.m. on March 5, 2010 (EST)
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In Disney's defense (something I can't recall saying before), the rather disturbing lemming incident occurred 52 years ago in 1958.

Bill, do you have dates or other data on the mountain lion reference? I couldn't find a reference for it.

A lot of the incidents referred to in the article were from more than 30 years ago. But the point of the article was that it is still going on, with a fairly large number of the game farms. I do not have specific dates beyond those given in the Audubon article. I think that the game farm involved in the mountain lion incident is named in the article. There are a number of specific dates and locations listed there, including names of movies still being distributed on DVD and shown on cable networks.

8:28 a.m. on March 6, 2010 (EST)
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In Disney's defense (something I can't recall saying before), the rather disturbing lemming incident occurred 52 years ago in 1958.

As it has been noted, the lemming incidents are not complete fabrications. In my field, there is both conjecture and medical evidence that large cyclical lemming dye-offs may be, attributed not only to over population. Massive Tularemia outbreaks are cited as a possible cause for behavior which we, the human, species perceive as suicide.

(I'm not defending Disney either, by the way!)

12:35 p.m. on March 23, 2010 (EDT)
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Roy Disney died last year.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roy_E._Disney

August 30, 2014
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