That is the song which came to mind when my friend, Charlotte B., and I took a little trip to the Alexandria Zoo recently.
I am not generally a fan of zoos. I love seeing animals... but feel as though they are not in an environment that is appropriate for them. There are always a few that seem really stressed which clearly is not good for them. But... she wanted to take some photos so I took advantage of the opportunity for a little road trip and some quality catch-up time with my friend!
I was pleasantly surprised at what we found. She had not been there in many years and was also pleased to see many improvements. Most (not all) of the environments were as natural as one can make them and nearly all seemed to be of reasonable size for most of the animals. While it was not ideal, it was definitely much better than I had anticipated, thus less distressing than it could have been.
So... with all that said, let me share the photos I took with my phone while there. (I'm sure Charlotte's were MUCH better... but hopefully none of you have a discerning eye!) Without further ado...
|There were 3 Galapagos Tortoises there. Two were enjoying lunch!|
|What's a Day at the Zoo without a flock of pink flamingos!! This little gang was napping.|
|An example of the attempts to provide "natural" environments. Well done.|
|One of two beautiful Black Bears|
|The other Black Bear|
|Kinda' funny to see a big ol' Whitetail buck... but he had two girlfriends nearby and no competition!!|
|Two Bald Eagles that have been injured and cannot fly have a lovely environment of their own.|
|The second Bald Eagle. So glad they have a place to live peacefully.|
|Turtles on a log!! I guess the first one is an albino? Have never seen this before. It was enjoying the sun, too!|
|I cannot show you the scale of this guy in a photo... but thought you might want to read about it before you see it!!|
|This guy is HUGE and I would NOT want his jaws clamping down on MY finger!!|
|This poor fella' could not reach any trees so I'm not certain exactly how he keeps his teeth groomed. The trees in his enclosure were surrounded by heavy wire. I'm not sure it is right to keep a beaver in such an environment.|
So... we spent a substantial amount of time wandering slowly through the property. It was much larger than I had expected and is very easily accessible to the folks in Alexandria. There were multiple groups of families with kids there to spend some time. A small train ran through the property so one could catch a quick tour or a respite.
There were some beautiful birds there including some terrific owls. There were some exotic animals there, too. There were two white tigers, a pair of lions (although we only saw the lioness), and apparently a new jaguar exhibit. We didn't see the jaguars.
At any rate, if you live near a zoo or some type of wildlife park, remember to take a little break and go visit it! You don't have to be a kid to enjoy seeing the critters.
As Christmas approaches, remember to be calm, be patient, and go easy on the egg nog!!
Until next post...