Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Lowry Park Zoo

We had been avoiding this zoo because of the admission cost of $30.00.  But we do have a two-year old grandson with whom it would be fun to go with and visit any zoo.  On Saturday we joined Nathan and his parents at the Lowry Zoo in Tampa.  Our first stop upon entering the park was the Wallaroo Station, which is designed for preschool age children.
Pictured above is a wallaby, one of the exhibits in this part of the zoo.  In this area there is a petting zoo.  While Nathan was engaged in feeding the goats, I was entertained by two goats fighting over a female of their species.
What an impressive bit of drama!  When the larger goat reared up, like he is doing in the picture above, he would then come crashing down and bang his head against the head of the white goat.
John thought that they were playing.  However, there was a third goat involved- the black one whom the white goat would occasionally nuzzle affectionately between the bouts of fighting.  Besides the petting zoo, there are also carnival rides offered at the Wallaroo Station, and they were the reason Nathan wanted to spend his whole day in this area of the zoo.  Fortunately he was too short to ride most of them and we were able to convince him to go over to Safari Africa.
It seems that what makes this zoo so costly are the free zoo rides, which number about 8, as well as  "wild interactions" with lorikeets, sting rays, manatees, and giraffes.  Nathan enjoyed feeding a giraffe some lettuce, there was an extra fee of $5.00 for that experience.  It was interesting to be that close to a feeding giraffe, if nothing else but to get a close view of his blue tongue - it is quite long!   We noticed that same tongue on another animal which we saw on the Expedition Africa Guided Safaris ride.  The okapi is closely related to the giraffe, while observing him I saw the calf (born in 2015) clean his back with his long tongue.
What a strange animal, right?  The species was first described by western scientists in 1901.  The solitary secretive creature is native only to the Ituri Rainforest in the Congo.  It is thought that the stripes on his legs are useful to the young in following their mother.  
Unfortunately Nathan and his parents did not join us for the safari ride, the wait for that was about 45 minutes because of the long lines.  John and I were able to do that later in the day after they had left.  The wait was still 45 minutes, and after taking the ride we decided it had not been worth the wait.  The expedition just took us past more caged animals- the train ride at the St.Louis Zoo is definitely better! 
John and I did enjoy other interesting areas of the zoo, which I will write about in the next posting.

No comments:

Post a Comment