My love/hate relationship continues with the idea of a 'zoo'. My inner child always wins out because we're going to see animals and lots of them.
This visit, I went into the 'reptile exhibit' for the first time. It is hot in there and "everybody" is kept warm under red heat lamps.
|a green iguana|
|the talons of one of the 'raptors'|
|staring contest with a muskox . . . he won|
There s/he lolled in all his/her grizzly glory. S/he is magnificent to look at. We must have stood there waiting and watching for him/her to make any kind of move. S/he did not disappoint. Photos NEVER do justice to the beauty of nature. This is truly one of Mother Nature's finest ambassadors.
Some interesting fact about the grizzly: they are the second largest land carnivore (the first is the polar bear). Most grizzlies are medium brown but can also come in every shade from sandy blonde to mahogany. The male is often referred to as a "boar" and the female referred to as a "sow" and the young are called "wobs".(not cubs?) huh! Grizzly bears live 15 - 34 years in the wild and as long as 47 years in captivity.
Here's something for us all to be proud of: the grizzlies have lost almost 1/4 of their Canadian range and worse yet - 99% of the grizzlies in the lower 48 Unites States are all gone.
It's stats like these that make me feel that zoos have to exist just to protect the threatened/at-risk/high-concern/endangered from human greed and stupidity!
|staring contest with a grizzly . . . guess who won|
|grizzly basking in the sun|
|smelled something on the breeze|
|Push-me-Pull-you? where does one end and the other begin?|
|happy hippo(potamus) basking in the sun|
|and the back end of one|
|this poor moose was one of the saddest creatures I've ever seen|
|semi silhouetted roosevelt elk|
|not sure if that was meant for me or if he 'tasted' his dinner on the wind|
|think it was the food - he waded right by me without a second glance|
|more basking in the sun|
|waiting in line for the water bowl|
|got tired of waiting and took his muddy butt off for a walk|
|a couple of argentinian mara chillaxing in the sun|
|peccary (also known as a javelina) - fast asleep whatever he is|
|big tiger paws|
|the - rarely seen in the wild - juvenile mohawk|
|not like any wal-mart greeter you'll ever want to see|
And last, but not least, aside from the sad, sad moose, there is one very lonely looking giraffe left at the Greater Vancouver Zoo. And this swings my acceptance for the necessity of zoos back around to the 'why do we do this to these poor creatures!' argument.
Why have we let our world deteriorate to such a point that a zoo is necessary for a species existence?!?
I wonder if there isn't a planet out there somewhere that has a zoo of glactic 'species' on display. What would the 'earthling' enclose read....
"Endangered due to over consumption, selfish greed and indifference. Can live 54 - 76 years in the wild. Can live up to 110 years in captivity"?
I know I'll go back to the zoo again and again and I know I'll have this argument with myself over and over. I'm just going to go back and look at my capybara and feel good about the zoo now........