Sunday, December 25, 2011

A Recent Visit

I had this post in que as an example of what this blog would be.  A bit of pro's and a bit of con's.  Detailing my visits as is.  I now wonder if I should even post it as it happened a few weeks ago still back in 2011 and since I'm trying to move out of judgmental blogging I'm apprehensive to include it here.  The reason I am moving forward and do so is I think this visit illustrates exactly how my visits to the San Francisco Zoo often go.

Since I am such a fan of animals and not so much that of humans, visiting the Zoo (or Park) can be emotionally challenging.  To be able to be in the presence of animals to me is a great gift.  It hurts me when I witness misbehavior towards them in any degree.  I just don't understand the human thought process and lack of empathy towards innocent living beings.  I just don't understand.

As a daily visitor to either or both the Zoo and the Park, I am a constant witness.  My visit on this day was pretty typical unfortunately.  It brought great joy of being able to see the friends (animals), great aggravation at human behavior, and great frustration on how the Zoo handles it.

It was Snow Day for the Polar Bears!  I went straight to Bears.  I knew both Bears would be in the Meadow at different times, getting a chance to enjoy the snow, so I wanted to be there at a time frame when I knew I would see each of them.  I timed it perfect :)   ... Ulu was in there still checking out all her Enrichment items of wrapped boxes with food and flavored icees!   

Once Ulu decided she was done and went back to her grotto, I went over to Cats.  As I normally do, I circled around the grotto's and through the Lion House and back.   I came up to grotto B and Tunya and Sukari (Lions) were in front parallel to the fencing, so I stopped to take photos.   I heard a group of loud individuals, I looked up to see four headed my way.  I moved to avoid having to be in the same space as them.  I stepped back and the loudness continued.  They pressed their faces into the fencing, yelling and roaring at the Lions trying to get their attention.  Disgusting.  I absolutely hate this.  This is not a circus, the animals are  not there to perform.  Sure we all want to see their faces, but it is what it is.  Having the opportunity to view these amazing animals IS what it IS!   You don't yell to them, imitate them, or vocalize loudly toward them in any way.  You don't clap, tap or bang on the glass surrounding their home,  you don't throw things at them, basically you don't do anything but look, enjoy and respect.  What is wrong with people?

Since the Zoo blamed my friend and I when we reported misbehavior (see blog san francisco zoo crime) I have deleted their "tip" line number from my phone and have tried to not bother with misbehavior, with the exception of when it directly involves an animal, their health or direct assault.  This I considered direct verbal assault as it was excessive, continual, through mesh and in the animals direct view.  I had just been in the Lion House and there were two (unusual, but lately curiously the norm) Security guards in there.  I went back and when I approached the two standing there, they looked at me and I told them what I had witnessed and asked if one of them could go out there.  The gal said she would.

She left and went around via grotto A, so I went the opposite way so it wasn't obvious I had alerted Security.  As I approached grotto B where this had taken place, she was not there and the offenders were still harassing the Lions.  I was pretty bothered by this and it just escalated as the offenders then split into pairs and two went to harass the Tiger in grotto C and the other pair went to harass the Hippo.

I went back into the Lion House and asked the gal guard if she had seen the offenders I described.  She said she had and that she talked to them.  I said, "Well you didn't stay there very long as when I got there they were still... and then moved on to...   There are two of you in here, couldn't you stay and watch that they at least stopped and keep an eye on them?"  She was very rude and said she didn't appreciate me telling her what to do, she appreciated that I told her, but not that I was telling her what to do.   That's fine and I can understand that, but the fact still remains, the duty of her job was not fulfilled.  Unfortunately this is par for the course within how Security handles those who harass the Animals.  It continually sends the wrong message and so people just keep on, keeping on with harassing the Animals and its wrong. 

I left the Lion House disgusted and went back to Bears.  The Keeper was putting out new goodies for Pike who was about to be let into the Meadow for her fun time with the Snow!   The next two hours were nothing but the joy of watching Pike's joy.   That, is the only emotion that should be evoked on a Zoo visit.

Thank you to Ulu and Pike for saving the day! XO!

Hats That Celebrate!

The San Francisco Zoo Management may have taken away my Membership, accusing me (and my friend) of untrue actions, spread those untruths in a way that some Zoo staffers treat us like we are public enemy number one, and try to make us feel like we aren't welcome there, BUT we remain the same people we have always been.  We care about the Animals who call the Zoo home and regardless of the prior mentioned, we will always be there to visit them.  One keeper told me I was "Goober's enrichment."   THAT was one of the greatest things anyone has ever said to me.

While watching the Royal Wedding of Prince William, I was taken by the sensation surrounding the topper that is, the Fascinator!   In case you aren't hip to it, the Fascinator is a small head piece that seems to be a must at social events.   Being crafty, I said to myself, "I want to make one!"  This was April, I thought it might be for next years annual Deyoung Museum event Bouquets to Art, where floral artists arrange displays inspired by certain art pieces on display at the museum.   That quickly changed when I realized my Zoo friend Ming Wah, the Snow Leopard was having her birthday in a few weeks.   

From then on making a Fascinator that reflected honoring my Zoo friends in some way, became a weekly event.   It has been great fun, thinking up themes and designs and creating mini art pieces to wear on my visits.  I think its festive and I feel good that I'm doing something to celebrate these precious Animals.

This will be an ongoing post updated with each week with a photo of Fascinating Me!   

For Ming Wah's Birthday, I celebrated both Snow Leopards, Ming and Rigel!

Hat for the Cause THAT is Project Get Wishbone Grass!

In celebration of Shastyuh (new Siberian Tiger) being out of quarantine!

Celebrating June Birthdays, Sukari (Lion), Orkney (Grey Seal), and Goldfish (Fishing Cat)! 

Celebrating  Amanzi and Sukari!  I had recently discovered via my own research they were Sisters!

Celebrating Mishaki (Black Rhino), Leanne (Sumatran Tiger) and Cobbby (Chimpanzee) Birthdays!

In celebration of July Birthdays of Jonesy (Gorilla) and Shastyuh (Siberian Tiger)!

Celebrating my fellow Leo's!  Pokemon (Blackbuck), Shastyuh (Siberian Tiger), Goober (Bairds Tapir),
Jonesy (Gorilla) and Busby (Giant Eland)!

For my Goob's Birthday!  Goober's bday is the day after mine!

Celebrating Gorilla Birthdays, Zura and Nneka!

In celebration of our Seal friends,  Silent Knight, Orkney, and Henry!

Still feeling the theme of the Sea a week later :)

First of my Halloween themed toppers :)

If we had Bats I'd be celebrating them, but I'm just plain celebrating!

For Wishbones's (Andean Bear) Birthday!  

Still working the Halloween theme!  

A little Fall festiveness :)

For Padang's (Sumatran Tiger) Birthday!

For Pike's (Polar Bear) Birthday!

In celebration of Thanksgiving, Barnyard Pilgrims,
Nataani (Sheep), Seamus (Goat), and Wakoda (Sheep)!
 For Ulu's (Polar Bear) Birthday!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

I am NOT an anteater!

 I am Goober!

 This is my good friend Kim :)

She likes when I smile at her :)

Words can not explain how much I love this guy!   He is absolutely precious.  I named my first Zoo related blog after him, goobers sfzoo friends.  He is still inspiring me with this blog, i am not an anteater!

The reason for the title is I am constantly amazed at how little people who visit the Zoo know about animals.  Ok, so maybe a Bairds Tapir, which Goober is, is not one of the main animals you learn about as a kid, but its insane and irritating when people don't even care enough to read the sign that they are standing in front of!   

It is not just with Goob, but many other animals are victim of mis-identification, not only by visitors but by San Francisco Zoo Docents as well.   I have heard people call Goob a Rhino, a Hippo and one of those extinct Dinosaur things.  Not a joke.  Come on, there are certain animals that people should know and Rhinos and Hippos are two of them.  So are Lions and Tigers, but I constantly hear people get those mixed up.  Mind boggling.  There are many people who can't even tell that the Polar Bear is just dirty from playing in the grass, they think its a different kind of Bear lol!

The other thing about getting it wrong is that its mostly adults.  They don't even care to teach their children about the animals they've brought them to see.???   I don't get it.  I stood at the River Otters one day and a gal walked up and she stood in front of the sign and then turned to her friend, "Hurry, Hamsters!"  I said, "Sea Hamsters."  When her friend arrived she told her they were Sea Hamsters.  I had to laugh.

I also hear visitors say mean things about the animals.  Why do people come to the Zoo to be mean?  To me, animals are the most beautiful beings, and when someone says one of them is ugly, I not only want to ask them if they've looked in a mirror lately, but it hurts me.

The moral here, please take your time to enjoy each of the wonderful animals that live at the Zoo.  Learn what they are for the sake of their individual greatness and as a to respect to them.


Hello Reader!

Whether you are new to my Zoo bloggin' or a frequent guest, I'll start by saying this is new blog for 2012 is meant to eventually be my only San Francisco Zoo blog.  I am working on wrapping up my other Zoo related blogs.  My Zoo bloggin' history has run the gamut, from fun Animal Bio's and Zoo happenings, to calling out the Zoo Management on things I find curious or concerning.  ... If you want to read any of my other Zoo related blogs, as well links to my photo site and youtube channel (containing more san francisco zoo animal material than any other place!) you can find the "awesome" link to the right :)

My outline goal for this blog is for posts to share my visit as I see it.  It will be many things. photos and notations about the wonderful zoo friends. curious and ridiculous zoo issues. disturbing and evil visitor behavior.  Its all happening at the Zoo.

Why visit my blog?  One of my greatest passions is my love for the animals who call the Zoo home.  As a San Francisco native, I have been a visitor all my life.  Almost four years ago I started visiting more often, which allowed for me to learn more about the animals (and other things ;).   If you share my affection for the animals, you will feed that feeling through my photos and notes.

That said, I'm behind already lol!  I have queued up a post for each visit since New Years Eve day, but I am slowly getting to the text of it.   So, the dates will be off as they seem to be taking on the date that I've posted them, opposed to the date I started them.  Therefore I will note the visit date in the subject line until I catch up, or whenever it differs.

Hope you enjoy this new format.  

Thank you for visiting!