Friday, November 20, 2009
National Aquarium Jelly Invasion
Today I visited the National Aquarium on a scouting trip for Penn Camera to determine if it would be a viable spot for a workshop, and I am sorry to say I just don't think so. First, they do not allow tripods during open hours, you can use a mono pod however or contact their public relations team and arrange for a visit before opening......don't know what that would cost. There are some possible shots there but it quickly becomes "invaded" with school field trip groups. The Rain forest is pretty plastic and does not offer any opportunities, so the best shots were in the new display of the Jelly Fish. I was pretty much alone there for an hour, until the dolphin show ended, then I was invaded with little ones...so I backed off and just let the crowds view the tanks. Shortly they dispersed and I made a few more shots and explored the rest of the displays. It is definitely a place for enjoying the discovery of sea creatures with families, but not a great venue for photographers. I did make a few shots of the jellies, all hand held, with my 12-24 mm lens pressed against the tank or a few inches in front of it.
Oh and I learned the Jellies are experiencing a world wide explosion of population, as the sea turtles, (their largest predator) are captured in fisherman's nets and become endangered the Jellies multiply. Also as the seas warm the breeding habitat is more favorable for their reproduction......I did see a lot of jellies in the ocean late in the summer this year, and some really big ones.....