Thursday, July 4, 2013

Observing Ulu in her new "Mt Ulu" home ;)

As I started this post earlier I had not yet seen what I just did.   That being a video the Zoo has posted to their youtube channel.   This is the blurb I just posted to my other blog http://mysanfranciscozooouttings.blogspot.com/

> July 4, 2013 - Well, well.  The Zoo has posted a video of Ulu going into her new home.  Its  wonderful piece because I love Ulu and am very happy for her!  BUT Debbie Marrin-Towey, Assistant Carnivore Curator who speaks on the video is such a hypocrite!  Hearing her talk about how exciting it is for everyone, because its going to improve the quality of life (for the Polars) makes me want to vomit.  When I was on my crusade to get the Andean Bear just a patch of grass/soft surface she point blank told me, "He doesn't need it" and  "He told me he didn't want grass", then laughing, like to was funny that he lived on concrete most of his life AND knowing that he had bone issues from such an existence.  Hey Debbie, what about the quality of Wishbone's life?  
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2AuxdbggbGA

ADDED ...  I should have also included this link
http://projectgetwishbonegrass.blogspot.com/

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Moving on.

Yesterday I saw Ulu in her new home!  I still believe this is an incomplete version of how best to make this renovation, but I was so happy to see her have access to a pool.  Allegedly she has not had access to a pool in the two months the construction has been going on.  Last week I observed her with dirt caked not only on her body but in her Eyes.  She was squinting and itching the whole time I was there.  I will do a following post on that soon (I hope).

Hi Uls!  I see you!

Again,  I still believe the loose dirt mounds are not the way the landscaping should be, but I am so happy to to see this expansion come to fruition.  Ever since I first posted the photo my friend Valerie Abbott took at the Detroit Zoo (see previous post), I have wanted this for these Bear Grottos. I have never liked the Bear Grottos.   I finally crusaded for changes in 2010, for the sake of Wishbone the Andean Bear, who was the only Bear who didn't have any access to a natural surface.  Those efforts were ignored.   It was only after the Zoo let Wishy die on concrete, did they do something.   So seeing this, I almost cried.  Just seeing Ulu with so much space around her was a wonderful thing.  It is bittersweet as I also thought of Wishy and how much he would have loved the opportunity to live on a soft surface.  But, NO ONE cared!  As well his companion Annie and Pike's companion Andy, both who died living their lives on concrete.  It is a disgrace that the Zoo never made getting these precious Beings off of cement and onto a natural surface, a priority.  Please read my 'project get wishbone grass' blog for all the details on the Zoo's lack of Empathy towards these Bears.  Modifications to these ancient Grottos should have taken place during the last twenty years, like what was done to the Big Cat Grottos.  No reason except for lack of caring.

Ulu was so happy! She was smiling the whole time I was there visiting with her.   I had to laugh as the first thing I noticed was the two huge holes in Mt Ulu lol!  I said, "Good job Uls!"  She's not only taking down the mountain, she's probably looking for her old pool!


Another issue with this loose dirt other than what I wrote in the previous post, is exactly what my afterthought was, she is just going to always be dirty.  I saw it while I was visiting her for over an hour and a half.  She'd go in the pool, be clean and then walk to the dirt to get inside and up to her shelf area and have it caked to her feet.  Ulu doesn't mind the dirt, she loves the Meadow.  Rolling in the grass and chopping on it (which obviously there is none for her here), she is often really dirty which comes off when she gets in the pool.  With the loose dirt, anytime she even walks into her night quarter access she is always going to have dirt stuck to her feet.  Unless they are going to have her night quarter access be thru Wishy's Grotto (the cement one) then there is no way for her to go inside for the night without having dirt all over her feet.  Which also means, anytime she has an itch or rubs her face, she will get dirt in that spot, and that spot will often be her eyes.

AND what happens when it rains?  Won't that loose dirt just turn to runny mud?  Its Just a big FAIL.

Checking out her new home while lounging in the shade.  Super dirty,(and itching) even just after a swim.  Poor girl. ... I will also note that I didn't see her walk on top of any of the dirt mounds, choosing to walk around them to get up to the shelf and into the night quarters.

Even though its not all that it should be, all that it could have been or can still be, at least it feels really open aired, having part of that wall down, makes it seem so unconfined by concrete.  Next they need to rotate Pike to the Grizzly Grotto and knock down part of the wall between her Grotto and the Meadow.    Speaking of the Meadow, with this new double wide space and the alleged transfer system, will Ulu still get to go to her beloved Meadow and will Pike get to enjoy the new expansion?

Uls says Hi!

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As with all posts,
please expand comments
for additional insight and information.
Check back as I reply to all comments.
Contact the San Francisco Zoo Director Tanya Peterson
if you want your voice heard.
tanyap@sfzoo.org

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