Most of the UK’s press has been duped by fake pictures of zoo animals apparently taking photographs of each other reports Amateur Photographer.
The Times, The Daily Telegraph, The Sun, and Daily Mail were among the newspapers to publish a story that a meerkat called Monty operated a camera to take pictures whilst a photographer left his gear inside an enclosure within Longleat Safari Park.
According to their source the African mammal was said to have seized the moment to scamper up a tripod, focus, compose and press the shutter to capture a selection of family portraits whilst the keeper’s back was turned.
However when reports stated that the pictures were stored on a ‘digital memory card’ photographers began to smell a rat as the device shown appeared to be a 20-year-old Canon EOS 650, a traditional camera which uses film, not digital.
The photographer, deputy head warden Ian Warner was said to be unavailable for comment to explain the inconsistency but Keith Harris, head warden at Longleat Safari Park admitted that the pictures were faked and said ‘It started off as a joke. It was a slight hoax’.
It remains to be seen how the papers concerned will deal with the seemingly inevitible admission that they have been well and truly suckered.