Thursday, March 3, 2016

Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo, Part 2

One area of this zoo which proved to be quite interesting is the Florida Wildlife Center.  Here we were able to view turtles, alligators, a panther and black bears.  An interesting fact we learned about the latter is that in warmer areas of the country as Florida they do not hibernate during the winter, only sleep a lot.
Also in the Florida Wildlife Center is a manatee hospital.  In the large tanks near that building we got a closer look at manatees than we had of them in the warm waters of the power plant several weeks back.  Here they were up close to the top of the water because food had just been put out for them.
It was also feeding time in the skunk den while we were there.  I did not get a good picture of it, but skunks were out wandering among ibis and sand hill cranes while a zoo keeper was tossing out some sort of food, that was an unusual sight!
Something else interesting which we saw was in Primate World where orangutans were holding up pieces of cloth over their heads. Notice the baby at the mother's right elbow in the picture above.  And something else which we had not seen in other zoos is the presence of hens and roosters among the monkeys, here they are used to keep the insects down among the primates.
There are several areas of this zoo where a variety of birds may be seen.  In the Sulawesi Aviary caged birds were quite actively flying around and a few were willing to pose for me, as the mustached Inca tern pictured below.  That seabird can be found along rocky coastlines.
Sulawesi is an island in Indonesia.  An fascinating creature from that part of the world is a miniature water buffalo.  It is considered a type of wild cattle similar to deer.  They have 2 rear ward pointing horns which allow them to run through underbrush without getting tangled.  Humans are their only predators.
In the picture above "Bindi" , a young anona calf ( in Sulawesi anona is the word for "buffalo")  born in 2014, is nudging her mom to get up.  She kept poking her until she did get up, and then ran from her.  Maybe it was not feeding time or perhaps it was time to wean her, but mom was not obliging the calf.
That is some of our highlights while we were at the Lowry Zoo.  Fortunately our admission ticket allows us to come back again when we can take in some of the animal shows and keeper talks.

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