We’ve been to the Zoo!

Last week it was our Poppet’s 2nd birthday, and her Nanna (Ma Kettle), her Auntie MJ (me) and her parents took her to the Melbourne Zoo on her birthday day.

20160405-104321.jpgAs I walked and chatted with DocSisterInLaw, I worked out that the last time I was at the Zoo was in nineteen hundred and seventy three or four when I was just a young-un’ on a school trip; we ventured down from the country for the day – a three hour bus trip one way!!

“Um, were you even born then?” I asked DocSisterInLaw.
“Er, just trying to see if I remember the ’70’s……er, no, I wasn’t!” she replied!
Oh dear!

Anyway, that last time I was there – way back in the Dark Dahoogas – the cages looked like this. So distressing and upsetting (for both children and animals).

20160405-104809.jpgThis one remains as a reminder of what zoos used to be like.

Now, it’s oh so different…….

(Warning – this is a long and pic heavy post!)

Our first stop was the Lemurs. Air locked doors lead into an enclosure where there are no barriers between visitors and the animals with a Zoo staff member in attendance to guide and answer questions. Beautiful surroundings

20160405-105719.jpgand here they are!

20160405-105755.jpgsitting placidly

20160405-105822.jpgsoakin’ up the sunshine on a convenient post

20160405-105904.jpgor at the front door of home

20160405-105945.jpgHome? Yep, these are their cool houses.

20160405-110019.jpgI do think Anne may have had a word to the animals, ‘cos from here on in they all turned their backs to my camera (like Anne’s sheepies, horses and donkeys do) and so there are lots of bottoms and backs from now on. On behalf of the following creatures, I do apologise.

Pygmy Hippo next (love the reflection)

20160405-110429.jpgthen some mandrills

20160405-110512.jpghmmmmm

20160405-110557.jpgoh, that’s better.

Otters

20160405-110727.jpgoh dear.

20160405-110756.jpgah!

Then the enchanting Butterfly Enclosure where butterflies of all sizes and colours flit and fly, land and take off, on your person(!), while we stroll amongst them, much to the delight of visitors large and small.

20160405-111248.jpgOne little girl kindly let me take a photo of the butterflies on her hand

20160405-111327.jpgand Poppet was tickled pink when one alighted on her shoe

20160405-111510.jpg
When I last visited, rides could be had on elephants; this is the only elephant to ride now though

20160405-111650.jpgThey are majestic creatures

20160405-114941.jpg

20160405-115000.jpg

20160405-115019.jpg

20160405-115034.jpgthe Zoo is now full of foliage; walking between exhibits is like strolling through a jungle or rainforest

20160405-115203.jpgThe Orang-utan were next

20160405-115339.jpgamazing creatures that swing swiftly along ropes

20160405-115534.jpglong limbs stretching to reach the next convenient hold

20160405-115610.jpgand long old-grandpa faces

20160405-115653.jpgThe bird life around the Zoo is diverse and plentiful

20160405-115730.jpgWe lunched with zebras and giraffes

20160405-115904.jpggetting the prime seat at the covered eating area

20160405-120043.jpgthey ate a slightly different menu to us, though.

20160405-120243.jpgOn the way out I finally recognised something from all those years ago; the Peter Pan statue remains in situ

20160405-120411.jpg(I still hold reservations about zoos, but seeing the delighted faces of children, watching them reading, or being read to about the animals’ habitats, survival rates, foods, where they’re from, I did appreciate the educational value of the experience. But my heart breaks seeing such magnificent animals, like the elephants, still “caged” albeit in lush surroundings.)

We saw barely a quarter of the Zoo, just Poppet’s favourite animals so, gosh, we’ll need to go again. Our Poppet had a fabulous time, and was falling asleep, excitement spent, as we parted company to make our way to our respective homes. Happy 2nd Birthday, sweetie!

Meredithe x

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14 Responses to We’ve been to the Zoo!

  1. Karen says:

    a trip to the zoo with our grandies is always enjoyable and not to be missed, so glad you enjoyed your nieces 2nd birthday at the zoo

  2. Carrolyn v says:

    Wonderful post! Loved the pix and the food for thought! Fun memory for your little poppet and you! BTW……I can do a great longarm continuous elephant design……they appear in the strangest places on my quilts as a trademark. Last family quilt had one in the river with a blue heron!

  3. Carole Minihan says:

    Fantastic post Meredithe, I buy a zoo membership for Xmas, it enables them to visit many many times, we pack a picnic and may go for a couple of hours each time.

  4. Our Grandkids love the Zoo especially the monkeys. It certainly is such an improvement for the animals nowadays. I often wonder what they think of us!

  5. Felicity says:

    Great post! It looks much more friendly now. What a lovely way to spend a birthday!

  6. I’m like you with mixed feeling about animals in zoos ……. but on the other hand – we will have to go together next time I visit!!

  7. It does look to be a particularly gorgeous Zoo. I suspect the animals get tired of being photographed – I know I would!

  8. I too agree with you about zoos, though we went to London Zoo a lot when my boys were little…..they so loved seeing the animals. Thank goodness they seem to be much better looked after these days. Lovely to see how a zoo looks ‘down under’ and a very happy birthday to your little poppet! Jenny xxx

  9. rachaeldaisy says:

    The Melbourne Zoo is particularly good. I used to live around the corner and had a yearly pass so was a regular visitor. I like the way they have made the enclosures as close to natural habitat as possible.

  10. thimbleanna says:

    Gosh, it hardly seems possible that poppet could be two already. Looks like you had a wonderful day at the Zoo — so much fun to see those beautiful animals through the eyes of a child!

  11. Cécile says:

    Oooh I always adored to go to the zoo !
    I hope Poppet loved it !

  12. Judy says:

    If there have to be such things as zoos let them all be as beautiful as the one you shared with your little Poppet. Thanks so much for bringing us all along!

  13. Kyle says:

    What a delightful way to visit a zoo, through the eyes of a little one.

  14. Lucy says:

    Hello Meredithe, we visited our zoo this holiday too. I love your pics, especially the lemurs – the pic of the lemur sunning its belly and the Pygmy hippo – love them! Like you, I had reservations about zoos but I know that our London Zoo does major conservation work and is successfully breeding asiatic lions, Sumatran tigers and gorillas and other species of endangered animals. I think they do a great job of raising awareness and raising money to continue their essential work. I hope you are having a lovely weekend,
    Lucy xx

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