Should Nature Photographers Intervene?

Posted: February 1, 2012 in film
Tags: , , ,

This is a video of desert elephants from BBC’s Planet Earth series:

Nature photographers observe and record nature events that can involve risk. I own the DVD series BBC Planet Earth and, in one of the segments, they explain a general hands-off no-intervention policy. This policy must make the photographer’s job painful at times. For example, in one of the elephant segments, an elephant becomes separated from the pack, and we see the elephant wander off, lost and thirsty.

I am unable to find the clip with the lost elephant on YouTube. While I understand and accept a no-intervention policy, I must say that this has got to be very difficult for the photographers. That said, I do believe that their policy is somewhat flexible, because they did rescue a penguin chick from a hole, while the distressed parent penguins watched. They may have also assisted the lost elephant. I would have.

Question: Should nature photographers adopt a strict policy, or should they intervene sometimes?

The BBC Planet Earth series was one of the best gifts I have ever received. It is absolutely beautiful and, at times, heartbreaking.

Here is a lovely BBC clip about elephant calves learning to drink, posted eight months ago:

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