Saturday, February 8, 2014

Visit Notes - Monday 2.3.14

Going to write this post as my Visit progressed, according to the photos as taken.  

Stopped to say Hi to Hercules the Great Hornbill.  Caught him in flight, going to get a snack from his Keeper.  In flight, seriously, the poor thing with a wing span of over four feet can only fly approximately as far because of the limited space he has to live in.  Read more in my post 

Sad to see a large part of the Historical Swamp Gum Tree broken off at the base.  I remember this Tree from as far back as when I was very young.  I started to tear a bit, thinking the Tree must have felt some pain losing a piece of itself, after near 80 years.  Just awful.

On Tuesday Jan 21, I saw this trash in the landscape that borders the part of the Lake where the Pelicans and other Waterfowl live.  Since there was a large amount of plastic, I feared that high wind might blow it to the Lake and be a danger to the Animals.  I forgot to tell someone before leaving, so I called the Security number I have in my phone.  ... Almost two weeks later, I remembered to check and sure enough it was still all there!  Unbelievable!

Another thing thats unbelievable is that the Curators and Vets still think its ok that Ulu has all that excess loose dirt in her landscaped enclosure.  Hasn't time proven that it was a bad idea?  Ulu continues to have dirt crusted around the lids of her eyes, every time I see her.  :(  

Maybe once she finally flattens the shit, the Zoo will remove it and replant a decent Meadow like in the Grotto she and Pike shared.

Precious new Boy Bronevik continues to make the best use of the pool he's been given.  Both he and Shastyuh love water, yet both are always in Grottos that don't have pools they like.  When Shastyuh first got here she was in Grotto B and every Visit I saw her lounging in the pool, like it was a hot tub :)  As well, many of the photos I've seen of Bronevik from his former home, he would being doing the same.   For almost a year now, since Leanne gave birth to Jillian, it seems that Shastyuh and now Bronevik are only rotated between Grottos C and D, one with a pool too deep and this one with a pool too shallow, while the Lions who don't use the pools at all are in Grotto B.  Makes no sense.

Heartbreak and tears is what happened when I saw Elly in this state.  I have been long documenting the treatment I feel Elly has gotten in the past few years.  Banishment to the rear of the enclosure, not getting oiled on a regular basis, and not getting oiled appropriately or respectfully.  LOOK at this sloppy job of oiling she got recently!!!  So, disrespectful.  My guess is they literally sprayed it at her face and it dripped down into her eyes.  Un-effing-believable!!!  This Lady is 44 yrs old.  She deserves some respect and gets none.  I'm sick of it.  And seeing her like this makes me sick and breaks my heart.

You can read more about this in my previous posts

In these posts you will read information in regard to the Keepers allegedly claiming it isn't "feasible" to oil her in the back enclosure.  Additionally, when the Animal Welfare Chair contacted the Zoo in regard to my concerns, the Curator told her that he "got a sprayer to oil her".  

You can see in this photo of Belozi, that I assume because the front part of the enclosure is more "feasible" for oiling that he doesn't have it in his eyes!  It has clearly been hand applied around his eyes.

Since the Animal Staff can't figure out how to get their job done appropriately and respectfully, here's a suggestion.  Since these Animals need oiling every 6 weeks or so, try this.  Oil Belozi.  Rotate Belozi to back of enclosure.  Rotate Elly to front of enclosure.  Oil Elly.  In 6 weeks.  Oil Elly. Rotate Elly to back enclousre.  Rotate Belozi to front of enclosure.  Oil Belozi.  In 6 weeks, repeat. This ain't brain surgery people!

You can also read more about Elly and Belozi not being rotated in this recent post

Last month the Zoo installed these heavy duty metal gates in a couple places to prevent people from going into restricted areas.  Too bad they don't take this kind of stance to keep people from breaching barriers to the Animals homes.

This sign is at the new Playground.  Pretty pissed that all these Donors are willing to give money to fund a new area in the Zoo while current Animals are in need of renovations.  I especially call out the Taubes, who I wrote to in regard to the condition that Wishbone the Andean Bear was living in and got no response.  While its generous for these people to give their money, Its my personal opinion that the Zoo Director Tanya Peterson and the Donors don't care anything about Animals.

A couple weeks ago, ground broke for building an enclosure for Red Pandas.  They will live in the Children's Zoo, adjacent to the Nature Trail where the Wild Turkeys used to live.  The Turkey Ladies have moved to the Farm.

During construction of the Red Panda exhibit, a drainage issue was discovered at the adjacent Wetlands.  Major upheaval took place to find the problem.  The future of the Wetlands being Restored pended whether or not it could be fixed properly.  I'm told it can and the area will be restored.

Ended my Visit at the Farm.  Was happy to see that Intern Katie was moved to make this lovely banner Honoring Ben for this Years Lunar New Year :)


  1. Lee "a tigers best friend"February 9, 2014 at 9:20 PM

    I cannot add too much to what you have already said above. I have witnessed the exact same thing on my zoo visits. Elly is disrespected, Ulu has mud caked in her eyes, Bronnie doesnt get a pond big enough to swim in for his size. Again, I think a lot of this is laziness on the keepers side. They are just too lazy to rotate, etc. I had always hoped that keepers took these jobs because of their love of animals but I don't think that is the case with many of them.

    1. @Lee- Thank you for your comment. I apologize for the long delay. ... YOU are right, it is laziness and I can't figure out why. I think its all about having people that must not care, or are disgruntled to the point they don't care or this lazy and unempathetic approach to Animal Care is being dictated by Curators and other Management Staff. If Staff spent as much time trying to pull the wool over peoples eyes on actually taking care of the Animals, some of the Zoo FAILS would be moot. Either way its disgusting. BUT most don't notice because the public rarely takes the time to think about it or hold anyone responcible.

  2. The drainage issue at the wetlands has been known for years. When I worked in the Children's Zoo several years ago they told me it was an ongoing problem with the wild turkey exhibit frequently flooding if the drain was not cleaned at least once a day (though heavy rains or windy days would still cause it to flood even with cleaning). All of the CZ keepers knew about it, the curator knew about it, and maintenance was frequently called in to help clear the water as well. No one cared enough to fix it until now with a new high profile exhibit where they "just discovered" the issue.

    1. @Anonymous- Thank you for your comment. I apologize for the long delay. ... Thank you for your insight. This is actually the first I've heard about the Turkey exhibit, interesting. Not surprised that other reasons are given, they sure don't want people knowing that they knew about stuff and neglected it. Guess its a "forced to fix" situation now as you said with the new Red Pandas coming in, especially because this exhibit will be unscrutiny because it has gotten the go ahead pending proper housing being built for the pair to breed.


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