Random (but not really)

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

We’re Goin’ to the Zoo Zoo Zoo

I was trying to remember the last time I’d been to a zoo, and figured it must have been before my cousin Liz was born. Which is fine, because I find zoos distressing. Not quite as distressing as they used to be, but as someone who doesn’t eat mammals because of cruelty issues, zoos are complicated.

But Jules’ birthday party was at the zoo, and I wasn’t going to miss that for anything, so I went.

It wasn’t nearly as bad as I remembered–the Pittsburgh Zoo has had major renovations since the last time I was there as a kid. In fact, you can actually see some of the old outdoor pens–one of which has been converted to a sort of beer garden, which was amusing.

There were also signs, such as that outside of the polar bears, that seemed to be saying the polar bears had ended up in the zoo because they kept getting into human garbage and other parts of human settlements. I’d much rather an animal be in a zoo than shot because humans have taken over it’s space.

But I still was made very uncomfortable with the primate area. It wasn’t too bad initially–after all, the sloth seemed super happy with his surroundings, and there was a one-armed primate who obviously wouldn’t have survived in the wild. But the large primates? I didn’t see signs insinuating or detailing how they ended up at the zoo, and although their area was large with trees and a stream and plenty of entertainment, it was still disturbing seeing an animal so like us, behind the plexiglass. So I wandered off quickly and looked at other things while everyone else finished with the primates.

I only took one picture of a large mammal, and that was because I was zooming in with my camera to see if there was something wrong with this lion’s eye (there wasn’t) but I ended up liking the picture that came out, so here it is.

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Pittsburgh Zoo has an aquarium, but I found it… unimpressive. Also hot and insanely crowded, which didn’t help.

But there were interesting aquatic creatures, many of which were explicitly rescued (including the sea turtle with the paralyzed rear fins and “bubble butt”. (I didn’t get a picture of him, because that window was insanely crowded.))

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The window of the single tank of jellies was very crowded, so I got almost no decent pictures. But I did enjoy watching them.

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Also:

NO SWIMMING IN THE GRASS!

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I know, those are daylilies and not grass, but it still amused me.

Another plus was that instead of lawns and such, most of the areas between sections were of wild grasses and wild flowers, which I did like very much.

In the end, I won’t be going back to this or any other zoo, but it was not as bad as I was fearing it would be.

Oh! One last picture–this abandoned stairwell was behind a fence.

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