Monday, July 9, 2012

Zoo in the Rain

We made another venture down to the National Zoo. This time in the rain. Which while not ideal did mean less crowds and more active animals as they were not hiding from the heat.

 Otters! I don't know if I have mentioned this before but I LOVE otters they are probably the best animal in the world and They love the rain. So we got to see them out playing it was a lot of fun.
 The Elephant was also taking the opportunity to get a bath in and then came to cover himself in the now muddy sand.

 One of the favorite exhibits for the boys was the reptile house. My step son has for most of his life loved reptiles and amphibians and this love was newly discoved by The Boy. We had to stay at every single one of terrarium type things until he was able to find the snake, or lizard or turtle or whatever that lived in there.
 They had the Aldabra tortoise which is on the larger side. There was a summer camp group who was there and they were all standing in front of the large males so when The Boy ran up to the display he saw the smaller females. he was bubbling about how big they were when he glances to his right and saw the males. He put his hand to his mouth and his eye got really wide. "Mama! Those are the HUGEST EVER!" It was absolutely adorable.

 The Zoo has a lot of educational displays around for each grouping one of the ones that made me laugh a lot was the "cat scan" at the Big Cats exhibit. They used the red filter over the red and blue image to let you "look inside" the large cats.

The Pizza Playground might deserve a post of its own. The Kids LOVE it, to the extent that at least one every 3 days one of them will mention it in some way. its in the farm section of the zoo and they have a large pizza set up with move able toppings. Then at different stations around it they have a interactive display explaining how you get from farm to pizza. How tomatoes because sauce and how cheese is made and the wheat turned into crust. I think its a pretty neat idea but The Kids only care about the giant pizza.

 Our finally stop for this trip was to see the Amazonia, which was the first time I had been to this one and it might be my second favorite (outside of the otters) When you first come in they have a normal ground level set up with a shallow aquarium, trees and other plantings, fish, sand rays, and birds. Then you go down a little and they have a river aquarium set up so you can see the life in the amazon river.
 Past  that they have terrariums with the sorts of little critters you could find on the forest floor.
Then upstairs you can get into the "branches" of the rain forest where they have little monkeys and a sloth and birds.
It was really very cool and a well thought out habitat themed exhibit that shows you a place not just a lot of the same type of creatures from around the world.

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