Cheetah in South Africa

Think Twice Before Taking Photos with Wild Animals and Creatures
Yesterday’s tip was about how to have a safe zoo visit. One of the tips in the CNN article I linked was “Say no to photos” at wild animal parks and menageries that allow photos taken with wild animals. As detailed in the story, “No matter how safe it may appear, experts say, don’t take the chance. In 2005, 17-year-old Haley Hilderbrand was mauled to death while having her high school senior portrait taken with a Siberian tiger at a Kansas animal sanctuary. The owner was unable to stop the animal, even though it was restrained.”

After reading this, I realized I’ve made some dumb mistakes in my travels. One was when I petted a cheetah in South Africa (photo above) at the Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre in South Africa. The other time was when I held a wild tarantula in Belize (below photo) that my guide found on a tree. Of course, those pics made for great photo ops, but they obviously wouldn’t have been worth it if either animal had bitten me. Next time, I will kindly decline…

With a tarantula in Belize
With a tarantula in Belize

The point is, as usual, to be smart and consider your environment before acting—especially when wild animals are involved!

Related: Do I Have Travel Insurance and Which Policy Company Do I Use?

 

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