Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Classic Zoo Favorites

We loved the prairie dog holes.

The camels were interesting.

So were the giraffes.

And elephants!
I personally don't feel a zoo visit is complete without elephants.

Monkey Views

ruffed lemur

black howler monkeys

golden lion tamarin

white handed gibbons

Soft Spot for Snakes

This green tree python was the prettiest snake in the zoo.

I also quite liked the Hopi rattlesnakes
(Croatalus viridis nuntius)

This cottonmouth has got to be about the fattest snake
I've ever seen.
We got to see it slither to its pond and drink,
which was one of my zoo trip highlights.

We all enjoyed the small animal house reptiles very much.
I did not get good pictures of the Siamese crocodiles,
but I had a very good time watching them.
They were mostly very still, but they would occasionally let out small air bubbles underneath the water, and then rise very gently to take a breath, and their nostrils would unseal. I found this fascinating but the kids had a hard time standing around watching patiently.

Bird Views

The pink one is a roseate spoonbill
(Platalea ajaja)
but I couldn't find a sign identifying the scarlet one.

This colorful creature is a king vulture.
(Sarcoramphus papa)

We had good luck with owls, awake and alert.
This one, above, is a long-eared owl
(Asio otus).

And this stern-looking bird
is a burrowing owl
(Athene cunicularia).

Amur Leopard

waking up!


settling in...


At our zoo trip, most of the time the kids wanted to go see an animal, watch it for, oh, about 10 seconds, and then move on. For a lot of animals I don't mind too much but I am extremely fond of the big cats, and when the big cats are active I can watch for hours.
My camera was especially happy with the amur leopard, because I was photographing through relatively clean glass rather than those obnoxious wire fence nets. Also I had brought a decent zoom with me. So we stayed a little while to admire.

More Zoo Views

Ethan and an owl.

Benjamin on a rhino statue.

Edward on the crocodile figure in the playground.
The kids loved playing on the animal statues.
Almost more than they liked looking at the real animals.

It's a Jolly Holiday

Oh, it's a jolly holiday with Auntie...

Auntie's getting quite a fright ...
(look at how BIG some of these kids are!)

When the day is gray and ordinary...
(LOOK at those snakes!)

Zoo adventures seem quite bright!
(We love giraffes!)

(Shameless lyric adaptation from Mary Poppins)

Sunday, March 27, 2011

My parents and my neighborhood

Going for walks with my parents is an Interesting Process.
Dad likes to bring his "grabber" and clean up all the neighborhood trash.
We do not walk very fast.
But the neighborhood does look better after Dad has been through it.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Friday Night Treat

These are SOOO good when they are hot!