Photographer Art Wolfe Gets Up Close with a Crocodile in Mexico

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When the first pandemic occurred in 2020, photographer Art Wolfe was working on a large wildlife book to be published in the fall of 2023. crocodile.

Wolf is a renowned American photographer and conservationist who has photographed the stunning landscapes, wildlife and indigenous cultural beauty of the planet for over 40 years after graduating from college.

“This species can be up to about 20 feet, but these crocodiles were probably in the 9-foot range,” says Wolfe. PetaPixel.. “We snorkeled from the boat while biologists with poles were attentive to our safety. They studied these particular individuals for years and explored their habits and territories. I know very well. “

Nine Foot Crocs I feel safe with water

Wolf says, “I felt pretty comfortable,” “and occasionally polar people will reach under their snouts at the poles and hurt their jaws. When you’re in the crocodile and water, If you’re not worried, everything you say you’re not paying attention to!

“We only had 3-4 feet of water, so we were able to fix ourselves against the flow. The crocodile stirs the seagrass sand, but the flow cleans it pretty quickly. . “

The photographer’s Canon full-frame DSLR is located in Nauticum’s underwater housing, just a few feet away from prehistoric predators, and Wolff said. [himself] Behind it is very small! “

Mexico's Yucatán
Yucatan, Mexico. Licensed by TUBS under Map and CC BY-SA 3.0.

Crocodile, because at the top of the food chain, did not need to swim or run away from the photographer. In fact, they are in when it was photographed in Banco Chin Choro Biosphere Reserve of Mexico, will “repel the nose with a bite” from the dome of underwater camera housing.

Taking over the half-water and half

The above wolf photo was taken at 15mm, f / 18, 1/640 seconds, and ISO 2000 with a Canon 5D Mark IV DSLR, Canon EF 11-24mm F / 4L USM lens.

The beauty of this image is that the reptile’s body is underwater as it walks underwater, but its nose is above the waterline in the Gulf of Mexico, showing a menacing set of about 80 glowing teeth. increase. The lens is also half-sunk to prevent the wolf from bobbing in the waves.

Seattle-based photographers say that underwater photography is “out of the box”, but even when working in an unfamiliar environment, he does research and makes perfect shots. I’m doing my best to nail it.

The clear water, which reflects the green hues of the vegetation, creates the perfect foil for the blue sky above, separated by a third line by the water level.

To take a picture of the crocodile, Wolf’s team had to head 30 miles offshore to the shallow area where the crocodile hangs. This was the most difficult part of the trip. The sand of the Sahara Desert was flying over the storm coming from the eastern Atlantic Ocean. This made the sky cloudy, but created perfect lighting conditions with a very uniform diffused light filtered into the shallow waters. The surface of the water acts as a natural reflector that illuminates the inside of the crocodile’s mouth.

“It’s nice to know that crocodiles rarely eat, but their prey is primarily seabirds, bycatch of local red-spotted shrimp fishermen,” says wildlife photographers. “When you hear an outboard motor coming, it’s like ringing a supper bell. For better or for worse, we humans are changing the dynamics of wildlife everywhere.”

Wolfe (born 1951) emphasizes that wildlife photography is nature conservation photography. This is to raise awareness of the natural world and to advocate to the Earth to protect pristine lands and endangered species near and far.


About photographer: Art Wolfe, in order to capture the glory of our planet for more than 40 years, we’ve covered all of the continent. In the past 30 years, he has published 60 or more books, this is like two books per year record. He won his BFA from the University, within four years.In Washington, he has completed the allocation for the National Geographic I made a book to document Pacific Northwest and Alaska Indian Baskets (First publication, 1978). The United States Postal Service uses a photo of Wolf on the two stamps.


About the author: Phil Mistry is a photographer and teacher based in Atlanta, Georgia. He started one of New York’s first digital camera classes at the International Center of Photography in the 90’s. He was the director and teacher for the Sony / Popular Photo Magazine Digital Day Workshop. You can reach him here.


How did you shoot Weekly PetaPixel feature released every Sunday. If you want to share a story about how your best photos and your favorite photos were made, we love to hear from you!


Image Credit: Header – Photo by ArtWolfe, Quintana Roo, Mexico, Yucatan Peninsula, Bancho Chinchoro Biosphere Reserve, American Crocodile (Crocodylus acutus) IUCN Redlist Status Vulnerability.

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