National Geographic : 2016 Oct
Jigokudani Yaen-koen (Wild Snow Monkey Park) in JOSHIN’ETSUKOGEN NATIONAL PARK Nagano Tokyo JAPAN Kyushu Shikoku Honshu Hokkaido 0mi 200 0km 200 NGM MAPS PROOF A PHOTOGRAPHER’S JOURNAL | nationalgeographic.com/proof ASIA JAPAN PACIFIC OCEAN 144 national geographic • October 2016 major tourist attraction, and a busi- ness anchor for the local community. Busloads of visitors, from all over the world, buy tickets to see the monkeys, which are fed by park officials. It’s not a zoo—the macaques are still wild animals—but with so many visitors it almost feels like one. As I’ve come to know these ma- caques over the years, I’ve become protective of them. Like any nature photographer, I want to create por- traits that do justice to my subjects and let their personalities shine through. But I also want people to consider the welfare of these mon- keys—and the effects that tourism may be having on them. j Two young snow monkeys huddle close together, trying to keep warm during the winter cold. These intelligent, highly social animals live on three of Japan’s four main islands.