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Devils@Cradle – Tasmanian Devil Park

The Devils@Cradle Wildlife Park up at Cradle Mountain is a great place to visit and learn about Tasmania’s unique “carnivorous marsupials” – the well known Tasmanian Devil and the slightly less well known quoll species.

Devils@Cradle - Tasmanian Devil & Quoll Sanctuary

A fantastic pose by one of the endangered Tasmanian Devils at the Devils@Cradle sanctuary

Spotted Tail Quoll, Devils@Cradle

The Spotted-tail Quoll, Devils@Cradle

The Tasmanian Devil needs no introduction and spotting one is usually very high on a visitors list of things to do in Tasmania. Due to the contagious, and currently incurable, Devil Facial Tumor Disease (DFTD) and the fact that the Tasmanian Devil is noctornal makes spotting one in the wild very difficult – and photographing one in the wild next to impossible!

devils@cradle wildlife park tasmania

The Devils enjoying the natural surrounds of his enclosure

devils@cradle wildlife park tasmania

Tasmanian Devil, Devils@Cradle Sanctuary

A visit to Devils@Cradle not only allows easy access to see and photograph these wonderful little guys, but your entry fee and money raised at the centre is used in vital conservation research into the disease. For more details on DFTD research including how you can help or donate visit the Save the Tasmanian Devil homepage.

tasmanian devils cradle mountain

A very young Tasmanian Devil finding his feet

tasmanian devils cradle mountain

Two young Devils, Devils@Cradle

Spotted-tail Quolls enjoying the sun!

Spotted-tail Quolls enjoying the sun!

Photographing the Tasmanian Devil

These images were captured with the K1 and the Tamron 70-200mm f2.8. The 70-200mm is a great lens (in all mounts) and well worth it as a close wildlife lens. If you are really keen on wildlife you will find yourself wanting something longer, but 200 mm in a wildlife park is quite suitable.

I shot using a flexible ISO (TAv on the Pentax System). I dialed in a wide aperture (eg f2.8~4) and a fast shutter speed 1/500~1/1000 and let the camera select the ISO based on the available light. This was a very useful shooting mode as the devils ran from dark shady corners to bright open sunny spots. I didn’t have to adjust settings at all, and the results included images with ISO values ranging from the low hundreds to the very high thousands (I set the ceiling at 8000 ISO!).

My 4 day Cradle Mountain photography workshops now include a visit to the Devils@Cradle Sanctuary. The next dates are May 1-4 2017. Contact me to book a place (currently there are only 1 or 2 spots left so be quick!)

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About Luke

Luke O'Brien runs a stall at Hobart's popular Salamanca Market every Saturday where his prints and cards are available for purchase. Follow Luke's photographic adventures on Twitter at @lukeobrienphoto, at his Facebook page or by subscribing to his email newsletter.