Wednesday, August 26, 2015

The Bronx Zoo

I need to start this post with some background info on me. I love animals. I don't like zoos. When I was growing up, we went to zoos with animals pacing in cages. I know zoos have come a long way and I do believe they are humane and I have convinced myself it is equivalent to having a house cat and keeping them indoors all the time. It is better for them though they may not always like it. Now circuses, I won't do those.

My Dad is continuing to cross things off his bucket list and often we are included in these adventures. When he saw a bus trip to the Bronx Zoo he invited us along. I was surprised George wanted to go and Ben said he always wanted to go anyway, so the four of us went on this excursion together.

We knew it would be a lot of walking and one of us in the group would not have made it if we hadn't taken advantage of the free wheel chair rental.  We were disappointed that the bus didn't drop us off at the gate, but parked at the rear of the parking lot and we had to walk the length. Fortunately the wheel chair rental is at the beginning of the South Gate. The basic wheel chair requires $20 refundable deposit. Word of warning: check it out before you go too far. We went a ways and realized it pulled to the left. We were fortunately able to swap it out at another entrance. There are also motorized ones to rent for $40 (with credit card $100 refundable deposit) but the $40 is not refundable. The wheel chair folds and therefore we were able to go on the monorail and shuttles.

It was a hot August day. I guess, I will put some complaints upfront here. There are way too few water fountains. I, for one, was dehydrated. You may bring drink and food into the zoo and that is a wise thing to do. The hamburg or hot dog or chicken nugget meals they offered averaged $12 with french fries and soda. Late in the day I broke down and spent $7.00 for two bottled waters. I hated having to do it, but health-wise, it was essential. Now here's the lesson I learned. After I bought the water, the person behind me in line went up and asked for a cup of ice and tap water (which was free). Ugh! Well, now you know, though the size of the cup, I would have needed at least five of them but keep this in mind should you go. 

When you get there, study the map to be sure you see what you want to see, as I don't know if it is possible to walk all the paths unless you are more physically fit than us. 

I will say the zoo is extremely clean and well kept. The animals seem to have plenty of room to roam. 

The monorail allowed us time to sit and rest and observe some of the animals. These pictures were taken from the monorail.

I was glad that we were on the monorail and that no one could see the tears in my eyes as we saw the elephants. My Mom used to collect them and this was the day before her third birthday since she's been gone.

Like my Dad said, we've seen too many zoos on TV that we expected more. There weren't as many animals as I thought. There were 2 lions, 2 elephants, 2 ostriches, 5 giraffes--you get the idea. Also I don't know if it was the heat or what, but the animals were mostly sleeping. Still we enjoyed seeing the variety of animals.

Bats hanging from the ceiling.

I should look up the name of this bird. A guide there told us that it can fly 35,000 feet. She explained it could do that because it has two different types of blood. It is amazing how God made each one of these creatures.

A friend told me not to miss the gorillas. We enjoyed watching a couple of baby ones playing and chasing each other.

 Other animals we saw.

We got the biggest kick out of the giraffe behind the tree. It was like he was playing peek a boo. 

What is neat about this picture is being able to see the fish below.

The bug carousel was very cute and we did take a chance to sit down and go for a ride.

George wanted his picture taken with this big worm.

Ben at the entrance as we were exiting after a long day.
So, now we can say in regards to the Bronx Zoo, "been there, done that."

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