Artis Zoo (Nathan)
Trip Start Sep 03, 2010
59Trip End Oct 27, 2010
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Artis Zoo is one of the oldest zoos in the world, and the third largest, though neither of these facts seemed too apparent during our visit. It all looked very modern and well-kept, and it didn't seem that much bigger than the Denver Zoo to me. What made our visit special wasn't so much the size of the zoo or any rare, exotic animals they had, but the fact that almost all the animals seemed to actually be doing something interesting instead of sleeping in a corner of their enclosure
We started out by getting reasonably-priced Dutch pancakes at the restaurant by the flamingo pond, and a curious (or hungry) peacock wandered by right next to us as we ate. I also realized for the first time that the undersides of flamingo wings are black- did you know that? After that we decided to see some of the animals getting fed, and started with the pelicans- though it turned out the lemurs right nearby were getting fed as well, so we hurried over to see that. It was amazing to watch... they were clambering all over the fence, leapfrogging over each other to get from side to side, directly in front of us- I think I was only a couple feet away from the ones I was getting footage of, and I remember that one brushed its tail against my camera as it was hopping past. Some of the denser visitors tried to pet them, but were harshly rebuked by growling and nipping. After they finished their food, they quickly climbed up some of the nearby trees and leaped from branch to branch, showing just how perfectly adapted they were to an arboreal habitat... sadly, I wasn't able to get a video of that before it was all over.
We got back in time to see the pelicans getting fed next, which wasn't quite so amazing
We saw most of the zoo, only missing the aquarium, insectarium and planetarium... well, we actually got to the planetarium, but it was right before closing, so there were no more shows playing. After the zoo we headed back to The Dolphins for a while, then to a handy FEBO, where I finally fulfilled my lifelong dream of buying something from an automat. And it was actually much, MUCH better than it looked- all the FEBO items are just indistinguishable fried shapes, but when you actually eat them, they're really crispy and delicious.Then it was back to the hostel for the night... we didn't have a specific plan for the next day, but we were tired and ready for bed.
By the way, sorry if my recent posts sound a little grumpy or strange- I'm in a weird mood lately and probably getting sort of homesick at long last, as well as just worn out from all the traveling. But it's near the end now, and I'm going to try and get the blog up to date as much as I can while I have a free day. Looking forward to seeing you all again!