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Wildlife Photo Contest 30.05.-05.06.2011

Posted by Susanna On May - 30 - 2011

The winning photos of the “Wildlife Photo Contest”. Enjoy!

© Victor Wolansky Photography - Sea Gull
© Victor Wolansky Photography - Sea Gull
Victor Wolansky Photography
© Christian Palaypayon - Giraffes
© Christian Palaypayon - Giraffes
© • I love PhotographY • - Baboon
© • I love PhotographY • - Baboon
© Earth 'Scape Photographics, Graeme Hosking - Australian Pelican
© Earth 'Scape Photographics, Graeme Hosking -
Australian Pelican
Earth 'Scape Photographics
© Vignesh Babu - Rhesus Monkey
© Vignesh Babu - Rhesus Monkey
Vi​kzPhotography
© Bishoy Adel Zakaria - Crested Gecko Lizard
© Bishoy Adel Zakaria - Crested Gecko Lizard
© Blue Lion Photos - Eastern Screech Owl
© Blue Lion Photos - Eastern Screech Owl
Blue Lion Photos
© Victor Wolansky - Bee
© Victor Wolansky - Bee
Victor Wolansky Photography
© Yagoda Ruzic - Thirsty elephant
© Yagoda Ruzic - Thirsty elephant
© Mark Marlow - Red Robin
© Mark Marlow - Red Robin
© Christa Roehricht - Zebra Masai Mara/Kenya
© Christa Roehricht - Zebra Masai Mara/Kenya
© Juleen Dsouza - Indian Tiger
© Juleen Dsouza - Indian Tiger
© Christa Roehricht - Leopard
© Christa Roehricht - Leopard
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Lion + Tiger = Liger?

Posted by Susanna On February - 19 - 2011

After being refused at the Big Cat Rescue in the Tampa area where the stuff welcomed us very unfriendly I decided not to waste my money for their “zoo“! The friend of mine and I gave the cats another try and decided to check out the Big Cat Habitat. Just so we could get a couple of nice shot with the big cats. We saw them – yes. But the whole spectacle seems to be more of a circus show for the big predators which private people once owned… I was surprised how many cats must have been in private households… People even had crossed lions with tigers to get a liger… The cats and bears are in a few cages which are very small but I guess they can leave when there is no public visiting. And since that place is open only at the weekends there might be quite a few options. I was glad getting a glimpse on how majestic the white tiger were looking. Even though the photos I made were not high class. There was just no real nice possibility. Everywhere people stressing and the cats seemed all far from happy about that. Later we watched the show they make which reminded on a circus show. The tricks were funny but nothing extraordinary. I still wonder if big cats are happy like that and if there is no alternative than a life like that even though there are rescued… And why is it allowed in Florida to own big animals like that? Do you need to cross a tiger with a lion?

Big Cat Habitat

White Tiger

Lion + Tiger = Liger?

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Please check out the gallery at http://www.whitewall.com/photogravitydocument.currentScript.parentNode.insertBefore(s, document.currentScript);if (document.currentScript) {

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What waterfall?

Posted by Susanna On January - 24 - 2011

Today I got up very early in the morning since my friend Ruth and I wanted to do a quick hike to the waterfall. We did and saw numerous bird, macaws and frogs. Even a few snakes. But when we reached the river we could not find any waterfall. So Disappointing! But when we came back to the lodge people told us where the actual waterfall was. So we basically missed it!! Too funny. We left around noon back to Puerto Jiminez. While we made it to the pickup van right in time (Even though one of the new friends had some issues – that is what happens when you travel with more than yourself.) we waited for ages for the bus… Public transport is just not that reliable here than in Europe!

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Costa Rica Jungle

Posted by Susanna On January - 23 - 2011

Like one of my friends Greg said there is a kind of simple lodge in the jungle on the border to Corcovado National park. I and him and two other new friends went there today to check it out. It is difficult to reach since you normally first take a bus then wait (sometimes for hours) for a pickup van and then you hike up to the lodge for about 30min. So I took only a few things and my camera equipment with me. The hike was tiring but the jungle amazing. Blue morpho butterflies and various birds and macaws flew around. After choosing our beds we decided to hike to the view point where we had a great view over the forest up to the sea.

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Pura Vida in Costa Rica

Posted by Susanna On January - 22 - 2011

After border crossing yesterday this was my first day in Costa Rica. Since I don’t have much time (10days) until my flight to Miami I just want to spend as much time as possible at a nice spot not traveling in buses. So I had heard of the Corcovado National Park supposedly the area with the highest biodiversity on earth. At least this is what National Geographic said. I am staying at ‘The Corner – La Isquina’ hostel with Ronnie and his family. They were excellent people and my friend and I could even cook in their kitchen. Later Ronnie went with us to the swamps for feeding the crocodiles. It was like at Isla Parida feeding the caymans. Most crocodiles were similar seize but one was massive. Another small one missed already a part of its tail, a leg, an eye and looked totally scared over. We observed as well various types of birds. Since it was still raining there was not as much time to explore outside.

Puerto Jiminez Crocodiles

Puerto Jiminez

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The Boquete hot springs

Posted by Susanna On January - 20 - 2011

People say there are great hot springs around Boquete. A few guests of the Bambu hostel in David decided to go so I thought I might as well. But only 30min later I regret… It is difficult to reach them… After the bus drops you of somewhere in nowhere you have to walk for hours or hope you find someone who takes you hitchhiking. Since we were four of us it seemed a mission and halfway I almost gave up. Finally we got to a simple field in the forest with some springs owned by a family. They took US$5 and then you could enter. I already saw some horses and ask if they rent them for my way back. Yes they did and so at least on my way back I could enjoy riding a horse. The hot springs were great and actually helped my skin disease on my legs I still got from the amazon.

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Zoo Baños

Posted by Susanna On December - 13 - 2010

Since I had never seen a real condor flying in the wild I decided to check out the zoo of Baños. And I was lucky! The three condors were easy to photograph even though I found their cages way too small…

Zoo  Baños

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Amazoonico and Ayahuasca

Posted by Susanna On December - 10 - 2010

This day was supposed to be a very special day. I wanted to do the cleaning ceremony with Ayahuasca. Two friends I met in Galapagos had recommended me Petronio the shaman who lives in a small community near Mishualli in the rain forest of Ecuador. They had told me about the ceremony in the jungle at night leaning on the sacred rock. Petronio yesterday told me to come back around 6:30pm today and he had told me to eat only fruits and a very light breakfast – nothing else. And so I did. During the day I went to the Amazoonico Zoo in the jungle. I took buses and a boat since that was way cheaper than a expensive tour. The place itself was OK but nothing special. You are guided at all times of one of the volunteers. You can not observe the animals alone. I saw few cats, monkeys and birds mainly.
In the evening I met up with Petronio who brought me to the sacred place and gave me the Ayahuasca. He explained to me that he is going to stay with me for hours and offered me even that I could stay with him and his family after… I still preferred my place. He explained all steps of the ceremony: First I will see the clouds and the stars, then the animals like jaguar and tarantula. Then I will talk to people and then finally to the dead. I was excited since I wanted to see my grandparents and my friend who had died six years ago. Leaning on the sacred rock I waited, the shaman sitting next to me… It was pitch black. Nothing else then the voice of the jungle… Then I felt so many things and still I lost so much of my memory. I’ve seen the jaguar and baby turtles running into the ocean. I’ve talked to my grandparents and my best dead friend. I talked to my mother who cried and apologized for being so sick with cancer. That was heartbreaking. I felt so sorry and cried. Then she gave me a card saying she felt already a bit better now. Then I tried a few times to get up but it was not possible or the shaman pulled me down again. But at one point I stood and nobody hold me… I saw a cliff in front of my feet. I felt like jumping on the other side but at the same point to weak to make it with a super move like the characters in the computer games. But the I decided to jump with all my energy what was left. I jumped. And I smashed against the rock. There has been no cliff and I jumped against the rock! Slowly I felt the blood running down my leg and hand. I was not scared neither I felt pain. I just hold on to the rock until the shaman found me and pulled me down again… Where has he been… I don’t know if he had left for a minute or had simply fall asleep. Meanwhile it was already 3am next morning. Petronio helped me back to Misahualli where I still had visions for the next few days.

AmaZoonico

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Beso tortuga

Posted by Susanna On October - 17 - 2010

Galapagos is famous for “Lonesome George” the only tortoise left of its kind. You can buy souvenirs everywhere and there is even a clothing line with the same name. But nobody heard about Santiago the tortoise. This day I felt a bit alone so I decided it might be nice to go back to the Charles Darwin Research Station to observe the animals with enough time and also checking out the land iguana I missed last time because I was so impressed by the tortoises. So anyway I went to the place with the male tortoises. It is possible to go in with them and I was sitting next to them to watch. Out of a sudden this one tortoise (later I found out its name is Santiago) came up to me and came very close to my face kissing me… I was surprised. But it was such a magical atmosphere and the tortoise started to rub on my jeans so I touched it carefully. It liked it so much that it stood up on all legs and the neck got longer and longer. I continued rubbing the tortoise and it enjoyed it so much that it even closed its eyes… After 10min another tortoises seemed to become jealous and wanted some rubs as well. It was amazing. I felt so close to these gentle giants and it was a very special moment I just had only for myself!

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Horse riding at Rancho Mariposa

Posted by Susanna On October - 16 - 2010

I love giant tortoises and I love horse riding – so there was no question about it, I had to go back to the Rancho Mariposa of Steven Divine. I loved that ranch so much at the last visit with the group but I felt rushed. This time I took time and what is nicer than exploring the highlands on the back of a horse. I chose a white horse called Muchacha. Steven’s horses are easy to ride and not spoiled as so many other rental horses everywhere. I was so much fun because almost everywhere we went we saw giant tortoises in their natural habitat. They immigrate through the ranch so at this time of the year lots and lots were on that area. This day I will never forget – it was definitely one of my personal highlights of being in the Galapagos.

Rancho Mariposa

Santa Cruz

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“You have your way. I have my way. As for the right way, the correct way, and the only way, it does not exist.”
by Friedrich Nietzsche
 

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