Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Elephants, Tigers, and Bears. Oh my!

Tuesday, May 25

On Sunday the girls and I along with two other families, got to go on a "behind the scenes"  tour at the Oregon Zoo.   It lasted over 2 hours and we got to visit, give snacks to and touch several animals.  I could probably do a separate post about each animal, but instead I'll link you up to the zoo's info page and just show a couple of my 200 photos.  If you want to go straight to the photo album (only 56 photos), click here
After it was all over, the girls suddenly realized what a special even this was.  They just kept saying, "Mom, that was so awesome!"  I know! 

First stop was our own personal show/feeding session/photo op with Chendra the elephant. 

Then I asked her handler to show me the end of her trunk.  
Then he told her to blow.  Doh!  I'm so gullible.  My first instinct was to protect my camera, but I wasn't fast enough.   Thank goodness for filters and I hope mine is OK after washing it with a wet wipe and drying with my t-shirt.  I also hope Chendra isn't sick, because I definitely inhaled some elephant germs.  At least I had my glasses on!

Then we got to meet Mo the Humboldt Penguin.  He walked right out of his habitat into the office to meet us.  My photos are a little blurry, but here he is giving Kyla's leg a hug.  Too funny!

Next stop was the bears.  We stayed a few feet away from the door and watched Amy, our guide feed them snacks.  Conrad the polar bear seemed so tame I would have pet him if they would have allowed it. 

I took a ton of photos, but the bars were really cramping my style.  I'm kind of glad they were there while meeting Jody & Vivian, the Sun bears though. 
They started fighting over snacks once and that was a bit scary.  Check out the long tongues and claws these girls have.

Here is Pete, a Black Rhino.  He was very sweet and loves apples, but watch out, you may get slimed!  We even got to pet this guy.

The Hippos, Bubbles & Poppy were also excited to get their snack.  They patiently stood at the gate with their huge mouths open, waiting for the apples to get tossed in.  It was so cool to see these huge animals out of the water.

We had a quick visit to meet Nikki and Mik, Amur Tigers and Kia, an Amur LeopardOne of the kids asked if why we weren't feeding them - can you say carnivore?  I didn't really get good photos of these guys and Kia was feeling pretty shy.

Last stop of the tour was a fun fish feeding session with the Sea Lions, Julius & Gus.

Well, I don't think I missed anyone.  Thanks again to my friend Amy, the zoo keeper and tour guide.  We had a truly unique experience and day at the zoo we will never forget!


Mrs Soup said...

Okay, that is SO AWESOME! And I love that they have names that I know. I'm totally going to call them that when we go next...

thedailyclick said...

That is so cool! My girls would have loved that!

Jessica Monte said...

Amazing! How lucky you are to get to meet the animals; so intimate! And gosh, the photos are spectacular!