Friday, May 1, 2015

Auckland Zoo

It was pouring rain off and on all night, plus thunder and lightning for good measure. This Airbnb place in Auckland is a bit run-down (no microwave, no frying pan, no seals on the doors, ants in the kitchen, etc.), so that's a bummer. It does have a huge TV though.

We left late to avoid the worst of the rain and spent the day at the Auckland Zoo. They had numerous places where the animals were very close to the walkways, something I'm not used to. Most of them were out and visible. I got to see several more tui birds which are my new favorite (along with the pukeko). In the nocturnal area, I saw the legs of a kiwi bird way at the back of the really dark enclosure. They are really elusive! The big cats were great as always. We saw a bird catch a fish and then down it in a couple chugs. That was a first!

Several displays emphasized how many important discoveries have come from the rainforest and how deforestation is destroying the plants and animals that call it home. Palm oil, in particular, was singled out as something consumers should stop buying. It's in a lot of processed food now (and isn't good for you), but it's hard to get companies to take any responsibility for sustainability. Another reminder of how destructive industrialization has been on our planet...

red panda

elephant out for a walk around the zoo


some kind of beautiful bird

Tasmanian Devil (looks like a mole)

alligator or crocodile

lemurs taking the sun

meerkat pile

so cute!



it's about to swallow this fish whole

cheetahs on their "cat condo"

lion has better things to look at than us

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