Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Election day, Zoo day

The two aren't really connected, except that we did both things today  -- voted in the Municipal elections this morning, and walked around the zoo on a sunny, windy afternoon.

Campaign signs at the Sears Mall (intersection of Seward Highway and Northern Lights Blvd, one of the busiest in town). Neither Ms. Marsett nor Mr. Darden are ahead in their races, but both had a solid public presence.

Morning sun, at 10:30 a.m.

One of the two polar bears. He was only up long enough to find another place to nap.

My hand compared to a polar bear paw. Not a chance. My hand is about the same size as a black bear's paw, but the bear's claws outrank mine considerably.

As a friend to the children commend me the Yak.   
   You will find it exactly the thing:
It will carry and fetch, you can ride on its back,   
   Or lead it about with a string.
                                -- Hilaire Belloc, "The Yak" (rest of the poem is here

The musk-ox has much the same grumpy look as the yak, but its horns are more stylish.

The two snow leopards are separated by wire mesh; for a few minutes they were charging at each other, then backing off, turning, and charging again.

We went on past their enclosure; when we came back, this one was enjoying dinner.

The black bears are still hibernating, one of the zoo keepers told us, but the three browns are out and about. This one is clearly ready to exercise its jaw muscles, and if an iron fence is the only thing available, that will suffice.

Bear paw, not the pastry kind.

A good-looking mountain goat.

Trumpeter swans with damaged wings -- they came from Iowa, where they were hurt when they hit power lines.

Mallards following a swan into the water. The swans stir up food for themselves to eat, and the ducks tag along for whatever the swans might miss.

One of a pair of bald eagles, taking an afternoon bath.

The Siberian tigers were both napping.

The llamas were at ease, but alert.

The petting zoo's goat and chickens were out, as well as the sheep.

Wild and woolly is the appropriate description. Maybe it will be sheared when the weather warms up.

The zoo has a pack of six wolves, all siblings, but they were lying about in corners of their enclosure, not interested in being seen. Jim volunteered to pose.

In a month or so there will be enough flowers to keep me happy, but for now, a dandelion is a delight.

The noisy ones today were the ravens, a dozen or more -- chattering, tussling, scavenging food wherever they could. This one posed for a minute, and then flew down to help the musk ox eat its hay.

A coyote. As with many of  the creatures, it was difficult to get a good shot through the fences. I was most sad to miss pictures of the Bactrian camels who are penned in behind the llamas, and completely inaccessible for photos.

It was chilly, despite being 50 degrees on the Hillside (cooler in Midtown), because of the strong south wind. But blue sky and sunshine make up for a lot.

Even without the animals, the Zoo offers forest and a small creek to appreciate.

There's very little snow left, and the creek is running free.

More sign-wavers on our way home. According to the late news, Amy Dembowski will face Ethan Berkowitz in a few weeks (he's quite a ways ahead of her, but doesn't have the 45% vote needed to avoid the runoff). An Election Day bonus was free tater tots at Spenard Roadhouse where we went for dinner. We will remember this.

Evening sky from our back porch.

No comments:

Post a Comment