Photographing Gerbils for the Virtual Show


Gerbil's move fast! Very fast. If you want to take a picture that isn't blurry, you will need a LOT of light. We recommend using a Photography Light Box. The box should be 12 x 12 x 12 inches. There are bigger ones out there but larger boxes may be harder to use if the gerbil can move all over the place.

You can also build your own light box. Rectangular ones are easier to use with gerbils

Remember: Gerbils must be photographed on a white or black background.


If you're pictures are dark or blurry, you need to use more light. The flash will make your gerbil's fur and eyes lighter which could affect the gerbils score.


Cell phone camera's are very common. However, most phone camera's do not take a high quality image. Camera phones are slow, often too slow for gerbils. Using a light box will help, but the best thing to use is a DSLR camera. If you own one you should definitely use it, if not you can see if you can borrow one or you can even rent them. For the best results use a tripod or stand to hold the camera, so that you aren't shaking the camera.


To take the best photo's make sure your camera is at eye level, you will probably need to hold the camera lower than you think. Give your gerbils about 10 minutes to explore the lightbox before trying to take their picture. They'll get bored and just stand still.

The Profile Picture

Check list
-The gerbil is NOT eating.
- Only one eye can be seen.
-The tail is straight behind the gerbil.
-There are 3 or 4 feet on the ground.
-The feet are visible.

The Portrait Picture

Check list
-The gerbil is NOT eating.
- Both eyes are looking at the camera.
-The whiskers are visible.
-Both front paws are visible.

© The American Gerbil Society 1998-2020