Capture the Wild Photo Contest

They say a picture is worth a thousand words...

2016 Best of Show – Jennifer Sanders

2015 Carnivores First Place – Steven McPhail

2014 Youth II Honorable Mention – Lillian Kuhn

2013 Aquarium, Reptiles & Amphibians Honorable Mention - Amanda Roggow

We tend to agree! For several years, the Oklahoma Zoological Society has held their annual Capture the Wild Photo Contest. ZOOfriends members, OKC Zoo admirers and Zoo employees enter their own photos they’ve been capturing over the past year at the Oklahoma City Zoo. From the smallest photographer to the most advanced, there is a division for everyone:

  • Youth I (through age 10)

  • Youth II (ages 11-18)

  • Adult

  • Zoo Employee

  • Adult division photos are categorized and judged in four categories:

  • Aquarium, Reptiles & Amphibians

  • Birds & Landscape

  • Carnivores

  • Herbivores

Each July, we receive hundreds (yes, hundreds!) of amazing submissions. It makes judging very difficult for our panel of three - a professional photographer, a Zoo employee and a Zoo enthusiast. Each adult category has a first place winner and an honorable mention winner. Youth and Zoo employee divisions have a first place winner and honorable mention winner. All first place winners in each division (excluding Zoo employee) are then judged for Best of Show. All winning photos and a few judges’ favorites make up the annual ZOOfriends calendar. As a benefit of their membership, ZOOfriends’ members receive the calendar each year.

Every year, we are amazed at what Zoo visitors are capturing. From sweet and tender moments between mom and baby to natural instincts of hunting to the playful nature of all our lovable creatures. Sometimes a photo is worth a thousand words and sometimes there just aren’t enough words to describe it.

So pull out that camera and start going through all those zoo photos or, better yet, bring your camera for a visit to the Zoo this weekend and get your submissions in for the 2017 Capture the Wild Photo Contest! Submissions are being accepted through 11:59 p.m. July 31st. For complete contest rules and how to submit visit

– Brianne Hinojosa, OZS marketing and special events manager

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