Kindergartners had breathtaking views of the various species of fish in the newly renovated Aquarium exhibit. We also noticed many crustaceans living harmoniously with them.
After giving our hands a good rinsing, we were able to touch the various stingrays hovering and swimming right by us. The rays are said to be trained somehow not to sting.
We could not resist a photo opportunity right outside of the Aquarium exit doors.
We seemed to work up quite an appetite before (and after) lunch. Eating appeared to be one of our favorite pastimes. We also played a rousing game of "Sharks and Minnows." How apropos!
The Primate Exhibit generated various questions and comments such as the difference between an orangutan vs. a gorilla, What if the Mama Orangutan and the Gorilla Dad had babies?, How to distinguish between the genders, and if some of the primates were considered children or adults. (top, center) While were were observing, two of the Silver Back Gorillas decided to take turns flexing their muscles and each charged toward the glass near us only to strategically stop short of it. I think they found out exactly who was the boss-not us! The winner sat innocently nearby staring at us as if nothing ever happened.
(bottom) We were not the only ones to be affected by the brisk Spring air. This gorgeous droopy jowled creature (and a few other Tans) were all wrapped up and contented in cozy fleece blankets! We found that the cooler temperatures made for much livelier animals so we didn't mind the chill. For example, a huge Bengal Tiger (not pictured) strutted it's stuff right in front of us and even roared a bit! That was worth the whole trip!!!
Just how many Kindergartners can fit on a weight scale? Well, just about all of them (and Am's Mom) but they still didn't weigh as much as a Gorilla Family. The Ks wanted me to help tip the scale but I conveniently hid in the bathroom. I do have my pride, you know.
We spent as much time admiring the sculptured animals as we did with the live ones.
We waited patiently to see if the Cheetahs would run in the "Cheetah Run." No such luck. They did, however, raise up their heads briefly and look at us (Adorable kids...? Tasty kids...? Cute and tasty kids? A spry chipmunk took the opportunity to sprint across the grassy veld instead.
The "Keet Retreat" allowed for some hands on bird bonding. We bravely held out seed laden Popsicle sticks and if we were steady like a tree branch, a parakeet perched right on our stick for extra close up viewing!
Can you spot the camouflaged Snapping Turtle?
Believe it or not, These were actually the teenaged elephants. The very large adult and smaller babies were around the bend.