Saturday, June 11, 2011

San Diego Zoo

One of my gifts for Mother's Day was a yearly pass to the San Diego Zoo. Yesterday, I decided to visit. Having a pass enables you to spend an hour or two at a time. I reasoned that all the walking would give me great exercise, as well as providing an opportunity to take photographs.

I arrived about 2pm and wandered by the monkey exhibit on to the Scripps Aviary. Since it was a cloudy day, that area didn't provide a good light for taking any pictures. Then, on to the Owens Aviary, which I always enjoy.

A pigeon just flew up and sat next to me, as though it was saying, "Did you notice me?"

As I walked through the different levels of the aviary with small birds zooming throughout, I remembered that I forgot a hat. On a visit last year, a bird pooped on my cheek and camera. Yuk! Thankfully, I had tissues until I could reach a restroom to wash up. It is still a wonderful experience to be able to walk among them.

The three colorful lorikeets were just sitting there on the same branch. What a "photo op."

Then, I made my way past the Panda Station, deciding against getting on line. This is a very popular spot. I followed the path to another of my favorite areas, a pond for flamingos, various large birds, such as an African Spoonbill (which I did not spot on this visit), a saddleback stork, ducks, and local herons and egrets that visit at feeding time. Luckily it was feeding time.

The Great Blue Heron in the picture flew away from the pond to another part of the path. I just missed him in flight. So, I waited around to see if he would take off again. I've always wanted to catch the bird in flight, but never seem to time it right. Sure enough, my daughter called and, as I answered the phone, the heron returned to the pond.

My daughter and her children decided to join me at the zoo, since the zoo would be open for two more hours. When they arrived, they wanted to see the Koalas. On the way, we stopped to see some baby ducks and two turtles. The children really enjoyed watching them.

When reached the Koalas, we found them sleeping. Since it was later in the day, there were fewer spectators, which enabled me to get some good photos.

The first photo was a Koala fast asleep. The second was the same Koala repositioning because an annoying tree branch.

This was a great visit. We are looking forward to the "nighttime" zoo, which opens on June 25. We attended last year and had a wonderful time. I really recommend that you spend a day at the San Diego Zoo and if you live anywhere in Southern California, you would really enjoy having a pass for multiple visits.

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