The Story Behind Christian Ziegler’s Portrait of a Rare Bonobo

On assignment for National Geographic, wildlife and conservation photographer Christian Ziegler was tasked with an unusually specific and difficult commission: to photograph bonobos in the wild. It hadn’t been done for more than 20 years but he succeeded, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).

“I spent more than four months in the field to take portraits of this amazing species. It was really tricky – bonobos are an endangered species, they are rare and super shy. I was deep in the jungle for many weeks and at first I didn’t even see any bonobos, but with the help of primatologists I was able to locate and follow a group until they accepted me.”

“I needed to follow the group for hours on end – often 14 hours every day, covering more than 20km.”

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The Story Behind Christian Ziegler’s Portrait of a Rare Bonobo
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