Thursday, May 31, 2012

Happy Birthday Spice Kids!

 Today the Spice Kid Triplets turn 11!

These three were born in one litter to Mama Ginger and Papa Seamus!  Both Ginger and Seamus were petite as is their daughter Paprika, but her bothers Basil and Nutmeg are big boys!  When I'd see Nutmeg hanging out with his mama it was hard to believe, but so much like a young son with his Mama :)  Paprika reminds me of her Papa :)  Basil can be seen often sitting on the step outside the stall where his Mama used to stay :)  They are very sweet Goats, as are all the Barnyard Friends.

Happy Birthday Nutmeg!

 Happy Birthday Paprika!

Happy Birthday Basil!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Tuesday May 29, 2012 - Visit

Visited Lily first again.  She was not there?

 New Male Kudu trying to get into the area where Lily and Erik hide.
Erik pretended he wasn't home.

According to the sign, they "dive for cover under brush when startled" maybe this the Zoo's idea of Enrichment. Why can't they have their own enclosure?  Their son Houdini lives behind the Giant Elands former home, while the front yard goes unused.  Would be nice if they could move there and not only have a space not much bigger than a bathroom, that they don't have to huddle in all day.  AND they would be mesh to mesh with their son.  But I guess having Duikers on the Savannah is more important, that was obvious when poor Lily was there all alone, hiding for two years.

Houdini visible in back behind the fence.  
Curious the front space isn't being used.

Another Zoo Game  LOL!

I missed this one on Saturday.  Just what we need, more kids running wild about the Zoo.  Good grief, what's the plan when one falls and injures themselves and they blame the Zoo?

Lion Shower

I've seen this before and just never posted it, but hey I'm on a roll.  So, Lions don't like water.  They never use the pools, other than to drink from.  Yet they have a shower that often streams continuous, while the Bairds Tapir who has health issues with his mouth,  only has his pool changed three times a week?   The Tapir is an Animal who spends alot of time in Rivers, so instinctively he uses the water for many things, one being a toilet.  His pool should be changed daily, yet I've been told over the years that the Zoo doesn't want to spend the money to give him fresh water daily.  FAIL!

 Dry Elly, looking for Gene

 Gauhati comes over to say Hi!  Hi Guac!

 Male Mallard having a fun lounge in the sun
and he was talkin' all about it!

Coati :)  I've never had one come over to me, 
usually they are busy doing their own thing

New Male Domestic Turkey, Alton
is constantly busy trying to charm the ladies :)

OK Corral Boys :)
Nutmeg, Paddy and Snickers

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Saturday May 26, 2012 - Visit

I honestly didn't think I'd be writing another "visit" post, as I really want to streamline my blogging and in addition to honoring the Zoo Friends Birthdays and Passings, just post photos to my supplement photo site ( ), but yesterday's visit was the perfect example of  both the model for this blog and why I want to streamline posts.

I have four posts in draft form about feelings, opinions and observations, that I have planned to post for a couple weeks now.  Starting with one titled "Exhausted and Disheartened", these posts were meant to be my lead in to posting hiatus, as they were written following the post about how the San Francisco Zoo used my photos illegally ( ) .  I didn't get a chance to post them, as once again there was a string of Zoo Friend losses and it didn't seem right.  I'll post them after this as there are some that are in direct relation to irritations from yesterday.  So, on with my visit!

Last week I thought I'd check the Savannah once again in hopes of a Dukier sighting.  After such a long time without seeing the female and never seeing them here together since the last shuffle, I was happy to find them in the little shelter space by the tunnel.  So, yesterday I made this my first stop.


Precious Sweethearts, Lily and Erik.

I started to tear up right before this photo was taken.  Lily had just given Erik some kisses on the back.  Little licks that could be considered grooming but were so brief they had to have been kisses :)   Why would this make me cry?  Because for me their situation the past couple years has hurt my heart.  Yes, I think of these Animals in an empathetic way, which some Animal Care professionals (even some pet owners) do not.  I personally do not care about the opinions of people who do not believe that Animals have feelings, I know they do.  That said, I will give in short their story as I see it based on the facts of their shuffle.   I will also write a longer post with more detail and photos.  Check back for it soon.   Until then you can read some of my previous thoughts that will in part make up the new post, in an old post ( ) 

In brief,  after years of living together as a couple and after the birth of their two calves, Lily was removed from the family unit and stuck out on the Savannah alone, ALONE! while her mate Erik and her two sons Java and Houdini remained together in their old enclosure.  Awful.

Zoo Games.  Is this necessary?

So, yesterday the Zoo had a Health fair of sorts going on.  It was a nice little event with good booths.  It seemed that the installation above and a few more of the like that were posted around the grounds were debuted in connection with this as they have a "heath" aspect to them or "wellness"  which is a word the Zoo seems to be throwing around these days paired with and sometimes in lieu of  "enrichment".   Are they really necessary?  In my opinion no.  In my opinion, another waste of money.    Also it they want to promote wellness, why don't they concentrate on the wellness of the Animals and have a little empathy for them as individuals and not commodities.   In regard to this post, Lily and Walter for example.

I know I sound like a complainer, but after Wishbone's unnecessary death because of his living conditions (lack of upgrading to natural surfaces) I get pissed, yes pissed about things that are done there that aren't for the Animals.  Doing things things like this should be secondary to the Animals needs.   I think its wrong to do anything before doing for Animals in need.  Spending money to upgrade Animal enclosures and purchase additional Enrichment items and supplies for those purposes, to me are what should be priority.

Posted at Walter's former "holding" area

This sign is a joke, considering how disrespected Walter was in the last few months.  Walter used to live in an enclosure at the Puente exhibit that had access to an indoor shelter and stream to eat his fish from.  One day all of a sudden, he was across the path in a "holding" area that used to be the senior Capybara's home. Two Crowned Cranes now lived in his home and he had a clear view of this offence.  Not only did this holding area not have an indoor shelter, but he had the added disrespect of having his sign thrown on the ground at the foot of the fence. The Zoo left him outside in the rain during many stormy nights our area went through during that time.  He was disrespected for months and they have the nerve to act like he was a valued part of their family.  Disgusting.  Just like the sign at Wishbone's old killer grotto, that states the same.  If they cared about Wishbone they wouldn't have let him live on concrete all these years pounding his bones to a literal death. I sure hope the SFZoo doesn't get a hold of Walter's offspring, or any other offspring for that matter.  

I have a source at the Audubon Zoo and they tell me Walter is doing great in his quarantine area which is not only in view of his intended lady Lucy, but it has an indoor shelter and a stream!   I've been to this Zoo and its wonderful.  The Swamp area where Walter will live is cool.  If you have a chance, visit the Zoo and say hi to Walter!  I miss him!

The Peccary Ladies :)  Peony, Petunia and Poppy :)

QR Code sign

Another waste of money.  The QR (Quick Response) Code is one of those Smart Phone info symbols.  This one will tell you about the artist of this mural, fine info to share, but how many people are going to actually care to use this?  AND spending money to make these when there aren't even enough signs about proper Visitor behavior towards the Animals.  Another stupid "keeping up with the Jones" type thing instead of taking care at home, ie the Animals who live there.

Poor Sweet Elly, still staring into Gene's space 
and needing to be oiled again.
Can't they A) Oil her at least once a month 
and B) Put a barrier cover along that area,
so she doesn't just stare there looking for him.

Sukari lounging in the Sun :)

The sign at one of the Big Cat grottos/yards.

So, even before Padang's passing I had suggested they change the signage to be more universal for the area, since the Cats are on rotation, meaning they all (Lions and both Tiger species) can be found in any of the yards.  My suggestion was to replace the specie signs with Visitor behavior signs and put a larger sign with photos and info about our Cats in front of the Lion House in the greenery area on the opposite side of the Fishing Cats.  Much like one the  huge one the Oakland Zoo has about their Tigers.   ( )

Now, months later this sign remains and the only Cat to be in this enclosure since Easter is Shastyuh, the Amur/Siberian Tiger.  People have always been thrown off by standing at a sign that says Lion and seeing a Tiger in the yard (the case at another Cat yard), much like this one that doesn't even show the appropriate species..  Its ridiculous and doesn't exactly promote education which is part of the Zoo's supposed Mission's.  

Training platform for Snow Leopards.

This really upsets me.  Last year I noticed that one of the hardware pieces in the construction of this was sticking out and could easily harm the Animal.  I alerted someone on the Animal Staff and the hardware was covered using rocks and wood.   In this photo you can see the pile of rocks and wood in the bottom part of the photo where they are covering the protruding hardware I reported, BUT you can also see at the green arrow an exact like piece of hardware left completely exposed.  UG.

Ok, enough of this mess, I'm hyped up again just reliving it enough to write about it.

On to good stuff!  Nature Trail is open!

Two Box Turtles :)
I forgot their names ;(

Pretty Turtle named Slider :)
what an adorable face!
Remembered her name but not what kind ;(

The Nature Trail is a summer thing, so make sure to visit and meet these wonderful Animals, that aren't visible for the most part during other times.  I think there are over a hundred Animals in the ARC that are off exhibit, so when you get to meet them on occasions like this its cool :)  ... In addition to Turtles, there was a Chinchilla, Owl, Parrot, Hedgehog, Newt and Snake out there :)

Will post more photos soon of the other Nature Trail Animals.  Please see my photo site for more pix from yesterday and check back next week for more ARC Friends :)

Friday, May 25, 2012

Happy Birthday Gauhati!

Guahati turned 17 today!

He will come over to me sometimes when I say Hi
and its amazing to have eye contact with him :)   XO!

Made a pin and wore it yesterday in his honor :)

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

RIP Corona - Navajo Churro Sheep Passes

Forever Loved
Forever Missed

Sadly we have lost another Zoo Friend.
Lovely Lady Corona passed yesterday morning.
RIP  Sweet Precious Girl XO!

At age 16, Corona was the Grand Dame 
of the Navajo Churro Sheep Family.
She held court in the Yellow Barn 
and even while plagued with arthritis 
she gracefully let children pet and brush her.
She was an elegant lady. 

You can view her Memorial Video here

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Inti - the Zoo's precious Bobcat :)

While trying to crusade for Wishbone to get some grass, my next planned crusade was to get Inti a proper living space.  Inti has been living in a series of cages for a decade.  Granted they are decent sized cages, they are still cages.

About a year ago I asked a Keeper about this and he told me he heard there were plans to find a place outside the ARC (Animal Resource Center) and build Inti a new home.  I asked an Docent who works in the ARC and she said she heard that too.  Figuring this was being taken care of I continued my crusade for Wishy, though because (in my opinion) of Zoo stubbornness and stupidity we all know how that turned out.  

A few months ago, Angelo the Anteater's home was getting some work done and I heard he was staying in the neighboring enclosure while that construction was in progress.  After he moved into his new digs, which I will note look wonderful! ,  I heard that his vacation home was going to be renovated for Inti!  Great news.  I also heard it would be done by May.   Until yesterday I hadn't seen/heard much "work" being done there.  Now that I have, let's hope its not too long before Inti gets a new home!   I hope it has some natural flooring.  It should mimic the Snow Leopard area.

Below are some of the photos I took
when I got to meet Inti in 2010.  

love you precious Inti!
look forward to seeing you again soon!

Friday, May 18, 2012

Happy Birthday Tucker!

Tucker turned 9 today!

                                     He smiled when I wished him Happy Birthday! XO!

Zoo Friends Birthdays!

I love Birthdays!  Everyone has one.  For the Zoo friends, sometimes its their actual day of birth, sometimes its their arrival date and the facility they first came to from either the wild or as a rescue.  As I became endeared to the San Francisco Zoo Animals, I wanted to celebrate them, by celebrating their Birthday!  Again whether the actual day or the estimated day, every Animal has one and if they don't they should (bad record keeping) and that date or any date, at least once a year should become their special day!  

The Zoo has no interest in honoring these awesome beings on their Birthday, but I was lucky enough to befriend the Big Cat Keeper who cared enough to share my interest.  Because of her, I was lucky enough to do something special for the Cats and Bears birthdays during 2010.  Now I just go and wear something festive and sing them Happy Birthday :)   

Here are some dates that might be of your special Zoo Friend's special day!  ... If not or any other info needed, please contact me, I am always available to provide what I know about the Zoo Animals. 

OH almost forgot.  While compiling this list, I had to laugh, as I noticed one of the Zoo's famous blunders.  They have Lulu the Mandrill's date listed in July of 2008, and her mothers passing date as January 2008.  Amazing!

1/1971- Elly/Black Rhino
1/1982- Sureshot/Eagle
1/1987- Olive Oyl/Anaconda
1/2003- Grizzly Sisters
3/1998- Monifa/Gorilla
4/1997- Amanzi/African Lion

6/2002- Hercules/Great Hornbill
7/2003- Jahari/African Lion
7/1993- Margie/Llama
20/1991- Pelican

1/2002- Trent/Otter
16/1980- Boomer/Emu
18/1989- Cleo/Mandrill
25/2001- Wakoda/Navajo Churro Sheep

4/2008- Nataani/Navajo Churro Sheep
9/1992- Bosco/Black Howler
13/2002- Kristin/Giraffe
16/1994- Rigel/Snow Leopard
24/1959- Tallulah/Chimpanzee
25/1969- Maggie/Chimpanzee
25/1970- Minnie/Chimpanzee
(Chimp info taken from Studbook/differs from Zoo info)

10/2002- Inti/Bobcat
11/2003- Bititi/Giraffe
14/1988- Sauna/Lion Tailed Macaque
18/2003- Tucker/Hippo
25/1995- Gauhati/Asian Rhino
31/2001- Spice Kids (Basil, Nutmeg, Paprika) Nigerian Dwarf Goats

10/2001- Paddy Nigerian Dwarf Goat
11/2002- Sam/Giraffe
14/2003- Goldfish/Fishing Cat
28/2002- Sukari/African Lion

10/1958- Cobby/Chimpanzee
10/2003- Skylar/Sumatran Tiger
13/1980- Bwang/Gorilla
13/1994- Slash/Cassowary
19/2003- Lupe/Black Howler
21/1989- Jesus/Lion tailed Macaque
22/1999- Pokemon/Blackbuck
24/2008- Lulu/Mandrill
31/1989- Jonesy/Gorilla
July/2008- Belozi/Black Rhino

1/2000- Shastyuh/Amur Tiger
2/1998- Eric/Duiker
12/1994- Goober/Bairds Tapir

5/2005- Tiki & Kai/Kune Pigs
8/2003- Lily/Duiker
13/1981- Zura/Gorilla
14/2005- Razzleberry/Nigerian Dwarf Goat
19/2007- Jesse/Mandrill
23/1998- Nneka/Gorilla

26/1998- Angelo/Anteater
29/1989- Diamond/Black Howler
30/2001- Snickers & Milky Way/Nigerian Dwarf Goats
30/2003- Wasabi/Rooster

25/1982- Pike/Polar Bear

19/1980- Ulu/Polar Bear

Thursday, May 17, 2012

RIP Rosie - Nigerian Dwarf Goat Passes

Forever Loved
Forever Missed

Sadly we have lost another Zoo Friend. 
Our Sweet Little Rosie passed yesterday.
RIP Precious Girl XO!

Rosie is a favorite on the Farm to many.  
All the Barnyard Friends are wonderful and loved :)
but it seemed many knew Rosie by name.
I think she had quite a fan club among kids.

View her Memorial Video 

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Zoo Spirits :)

It may be a few days before I get the past couple days of photos up, so I thought I'd put up some other fun Zoo related fotos.

Over the past few years I have caught some interesting photos in different places around the Zoo.  I 100% believe in the afterlife and that our Spirits remain after we've passed on.  I have had experiences that are undeniable.  Some believe, some do not.  Once you've experienced first hand, you can't deny the existence.

Below are photos I've taken (or been taken with my camera of me :) or otherwise noted as my friend Lee's,  that I think have captured Spirit activity.  To me this is interesting and fun!

 Orbs in the Giraffe Barn!

Spot of light above Lion House room.
Only appeared when Lee was standing there.
This was just after Tunya's passing.

 Another day recently after Tunya's passing,
an Orb appeared in the with the Lions.
Top: Orb is near Amanzi (Lion in back)
Bottom: Orb is near top of blue ball.

 Tons of Orbs in Seamus' stall!
This is in the Red Barn in the Barnyard.
Photos by Lee

 Amanzi in the last Lion House room, closest to the "nesting" room.
In the top photo you can see clearly a spirit figure passing behind her!
Both her hands, feet and tail are visible holding the Enrichment Item
and flat on the floor, respectively.  So it is not any motion from her body.
Below was taken within the same minute.  Spirit had passed.
After I showed the photos, one LH Keeper told me 
of odd instances coming from the "nesting" room.

Photo taken in the Yellow Barn at the Barnyard.
You can see two Orbs, 
one to the left, one the fencing above a Sheep
the other on the blue back door.

More photos soon!  Lee's has a couple i'm waiting to get.

Zoo Friend Tattoos :)

It may be a few days before I get the past couple days of photos up, so I thought I'd put up some other fun Zoo related fotos.

My friend Lee had her three special Big Cat friends immortalized in ink!  The art came out very well and catches the personality of these awesome Cats :)  ... They were all still here with us in body at the time, but have now moved on to play together in spirit and watch over their Lion House-mates.

paddy, tony tone tone, and tunes :)

Padang :)

 Tony :)

Tunya :)