Simple Gifts

I believe I live in one of the most beautiful places in the world; the Snoqualmie Valley. I get to see amazing things everyday. It's time to celebrate that. (You can view pictures in larger format by clicking on them)

Friday, May 11, 2007

San Diego Zoo Favorites

Here are some of the favorites from the zoo trip. As always, you can click on any image to enlarge. I wish I'd gotten some pictures of the tortoises, they'd be in my favorite list too...


  • Bononos were once called pygmy chimps, but they are not chimpanzees. They are less aggressive then chimps
  • Bonobos are the primate most closely related to humans
  • Adult females "take charge" in bonobo society
  • Babiess stay with their mother for several years
  • San Diego Zoo was the first zoo to have a successful bonobo birth

She's sitting with a baby, if you look closely (you may need to enlarge) you can see the little one's hand and a bit of the head.
Yep, I think that's poop she's messing with

Of course I had to take lots of photos of the baby.
Adults were never far from the little guy

Source- San Diego Zoo

  • Orangutans tend to be solitary
  • They have been described as "relaxed problem solvers". Instead of lots of trial and effort activity they seem to day dream and then solve the problem.
  • Their arms are longer then their bodies, over 7ft from finger tip to finger tip.
  • At the San zoo they are offered cabbage, romaine lettuce, kale, carrots, yams, broccoli, bananas, apples, oranges, and grapes. They get treats of papaya, corn, turnip, onion, popcorn, raisins, peanut butter, and walnuts.

A lot of people were captivated by the baby bonobo, but I spent a lot of time watching this big guy. It seemed like maybe the other one came over to give him comfort. Anthropomorphism? Maybe, but we keep discovering the obvious, how very like our primate relatives we are.

Giraffes (one of my favorite animals currently)
  • Giraffes make noise. They can even moo!
  • A giraffe's feet are the size of a dinner plate—12 inches across (30.5 centimeters).
  • A giraffe's tongue is 18 to 20 inches (46 to 50 centimeters) long and blue-black.
  • Giraffes have the longest tail of any mammal
  • The giraffes at the San Diego Zoo enjoy raw onions as a treat!
  • We fed the Giraffes briskets and that was nifty!
Source: San Diego Zoo

The 'little' guy in the first 2 pictures is a baby

This is the Giraffe I fed.
There heads are huge!

The pole to the right of the giraffe marks height in feet

  • They can survive without drinking water, getting moisture from their food.
  • They can eat venomous snakes
  • One of the San Diego Zoo's meerkats was the animator's model for the portrayal of Timon in Disney's film The Lion King.
  • Meerkats have a close knit family with individuals taking turns filling different roles like sentry, hunter and baby sitter
  • Their underground tunnels may have up to 20 different entrances.
Sources: Bush Gardens, San Diego Zoo

Polar Bear (Renae's favorite)
  • A polar cub is about the size of a rat when it's born.
  • Polar bears have an excellent sense of smell.
  • The skin under the white fur is black.
  • Their outer fur (guard hair) is made of clear, hollow tubes filled with air.
  • A bear's stomach can hold up to 150 lbs of food.
Sources: Enchanted Learning, San Diego Zoo

  • Guanaco are like llamas, but live wild in South America
  • They have thick skin in their necks, to protect them during fights or "necking".
  • They can run 35 mph
  • They are related to camels
Sources- Wikipedia