Monday, May 31, 2010

happy birthday orkney!

who wouldn't want to wish the happiest seal out there a BIG happy birthday!? my friend hazel and i went to the zoo today to do just that! ... the list i have shows today being orkney's 48th bday, but theres a discrepancy between the list and what's posted at his enclosure. i talked with the keeper and he did indeed come to the zoo in 1970 at approx. one year old, so that would make him 41 today! the date, june 1st, might be the day he arrived. ... happy birthday orkney!!! i hope you got some special fishy treaties today! i love ya cutie! ... chk out the video clip i got of him today, having fun swimming in his pool! >

...would also like to mention three may birthdays that didn't get individual posts. all the residents are valued and deserve acknowledgment of their bdays! i just don't know these individuals well enough to know whether photos of their groups are indeed of them, my bad.

sauna, the female lion macaque, celebrated her 22nd birthday on may 14! ... winnie, the female patas monkey, turned 5 on may 22nd! ... kaliandrah, the female koala had her 10th birthday may 30th! ... happy belated birthday girls!

prince charles

in keeping with my black and white theme, i'd like to post about one of my childhood favorites, prince charles. sadly he is no longer with us. i've missed him ever since the visit i returned and he wasn't there. he was the only zoo animal i knew by name. i still remember seeing him standing near the edge of the moat in the corner grotto where he lived. he was really something to see. i think as a white tiger ( he was a bengal) he was just so striking and different (back in my day) which is probably why he was a fav and why i remember him so vividly. ... when i started this blog i looked online for information about him and couldn't find any. one zoo friend showed me two items in the gift shop that have his photo. one is a book mark and one is a photo of him and his sister, who was an oranger. most of the photo items in the gift shop are not of our zoo animals, but this one photographer i think provides his photos of animals to such items, so we are lucky! i had seen the items but never knew it was prince charles. ... recently i found these great photos of him posted on flickr. the photos were taken in black and white and everything but prince charles was hand tinted. the photographer was kind enough to let me post them on my blog. ... i mentioned him to the bigcat keeper not long ago and she refered to him as "charlie"! so she knew him. i will try to get some more info on him soon, so please check back for that! for now, please enjoy these great photos of magnificent charlie!

thank you to gayle alstrom for sharing her photos! she was a friend to the zoo residents when she lived in san francisco years ago. you can view her other vintage sfzoo pix and other great captures here >
and follow her adventures since she left the city here >

either my research skills are crappy (i don't think so!) or this one slipped by me, ... copied in part from >

"Born at the Cincinnati Zoo in 1981, Prince Charles and his normal-colored sister, Whiskers, arrived at the San Francisco Zoo in 1982, to much fanfare. At the time, "Charley," as he is known by his keepers, was one of only 52 white tigers in the world, and was the first exhibited in the western United States."

i found it totally cool that he was the first exhibited in the west! i was right, in my day there just weren't that many and even finding photos of them wasn't easy since there was no internet! ... now that i have his sisters name i want to research her!

black and white

two pairs of gorgeous birds you will meet at the zoo are the black swans and the american white pelicans. the swans live on the west side of the pachyderm building. they are two females named sydney and sheila and they will greet you with a high pitched honk as you walk by! i am told by a keeper that they like seeing people, so i'm happy that this path was re-opened after being closed. my route is from the chimps down their path to the cats and its always nice to hear them greet me! ... the pelicans live on the pond just past the tropical aviary building. both are wild born and came to live at the zoo as rescues. angel who has been living at the zoo over forty years! is missing one wing and devil, who is nineteen, is missing part of a wing. they are never far from each other and one of the most beautiful sights is seeing them glide across the lake in the sun to their beach.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

happy birthday gauhati!

gauhati is celebrating his fifteenth birthday today! happy birthday gauhati! i hope there was a special treat in your day! someday i would like to know the hoofstock keepers well enough to be able to bring prizes and treats for their special occasions! i love the birthdays and want them all celebrated! ... gauhati is a big fav of mine! he is just plain cute! he makes the cutest faces when he's eating and his body armor is gorgeous! next time you visit him, take a good look at it.

you can read more about gauhati in this post:

Monday, May 24, 2010


another friend who lives in the ARC that came out for a visit was lucy the opossum. how cute is this face? its very sweet looking i think and she seems kinda shy. her little ears, nose and feets are precious! you know i had to give them alittle touch! not sure you can tell from the photo, but she has longer hair than ones i've seen before. i'm not sure if that's a different breed, but will check and post that info. as well will clarify her other details soon.

Friday, May 21, 2010


i first saw a photo of her online and was like what is that? (prehensile porcupine) and where can i see such cuteness?! since then i have been trying to meet sassafras for over a year! finally the other day when i got to go behind the scenes at the ARC i was able to! sassy lives in the ARC and is there when they are open to the public which is usually only 1p-2p on the weekends. i've gone and she's either in her little hut or out for a show or in the zoo mobile. i caught a glimpse of her from afar twice last summer, but this time i got to see her cuteness face to face! she is precious! its that nose, she is just adorable! she was having some nice coconut treats and was quite content with anything while that was part of the deal :) ... thankx to al for bringing her out!

Thursday, May 20, 2010


yesterday i was lucky enough to get to meet inti the bobcat! i have a photo from several years ago that i have always had in mind and wondered "what happened to that bobcat?" cuz i haven't seen him in as long and even then it was from a distance as he wasn't on exhibit. then recently someone mentioned him and i realized he still lives at the zoo. he lives in the ARC behind the scenes area of the zoo. yesterday a docent friend who also volunteers in the ARC mentioned he was moving to a reserve up north and i asked if she could take me to see him. YES she can! (thankx jane!) what a beauty! and a sweetheart! very friendly, in fact when we walked away from him for a few to see some of the other animals who live back there, he followed us along the fencing like, "where are you going?" soooo cute! ... inti was born in captivity, 5.10.02 and was hand raised. he came to live at the zoo as a kitten. prior to the tatiana event he was able to be taken out of his fenced in area, but since has not been able to. just another negative effect in the wake of a situation caused by evil troublemakers. the move is possibly in response to that change so he can be in a place where his enclosure is bigger and he can run about and even meet other bobcats! i wish i had met him sooner, but would be sadder when he leaves if i had gotten to know him better. it was a treat to meet him and i hope to visit him again before his move. ... i took a bunch of pix of him, couldn't get enough! these are some of the best ones, though he's so gorgeous they are all good! the one where he's getting a snack, that's a bit of coconut!, the one that looks like he's getting cranky, is from a yawn in motion, and the belly in the air, tunyaman pose is precious! it was a flirty stretch and roll :) will upload the rest to the photosite soon.

june birthdays up!

check the calendar part of the photosite, direct link

... archive photo from wishbone and annie's 22nd birthday in 2008!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

happy birthday ming wah and rigel!

today was the female snow leopard ming wah's eighteenth birthday! i made some birthday themed enrichment prizes for both her and the male snow leopard rigel. the information i had didn't have rigel's birthday listed, but i found out last week that his bday was in april. so i combined the celebration to include them both! i was lucky that the keeper put stuff out while i was there so i could see ming wah get the goods! she and rigel share the enclosure but not at the same time. she is out during the day and rigel has access in the evening. ... ming came out and went right for the popper! a party favor painted with balloons that the keeper put food in. then she sat down and stared at rigel as each other is visible from yard to night quarters. after about a half hour she jumped down to get some water and spotted the paper mache cupcake. she went for it, it was scented and also had food inside. she rubbed her face on it a bit and was done. it was time for a nap! when i returned about an hour later the cupcake was on its side, so it got more action at some point ;) ... some kids even sang happy birthday to her! ... my fav pic if the one of her showing her teeth (i think it was part of a yawn)! i just love her expression there :) ... hope you enjoyed your birthday fun ming wah and rigel! happy happy bday! to you both! ... thankx to hilary for putting out the goods!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

lions versus bugs!

it was enrichment crafts out again yesterday in the lion grottos! my friend andiecatt brought some big bugs, which look like fantastical ladybugs, but she calls beetles. these paper mache bugs were put out for amanzi and jahari with their blood sickle treat inside! i was on amanzi's side, and only got pix of jahari when he came over after to make sure she didn't leave anything lol! andiecatt said jahari approached his with the plan to snatch it and take off with it! which explains why all i got when i pointed my camera in his direction was blurry mane and something orange (his beetle in motion!). amanzi gave it a sniff and then smashed the shell and settled in! she sat there the whole time, mostly with her face buried in the bug, and then enjoying every last piece of blood icee that spilled out on her hot rock! ... thankx as always to barb! ... many cute captures, i love them all! her face inside with the bug eyes peeking over her arm, tongue out with the two pawed grip, her head stuck in the bug body, tongue out faces side by side, its all cute! ... chk the photosite for more! >

Thursday, May 13, 2010

happy birthday pescita!

today was the female river otter's birthday! i brought a couple coconuts by and the bday girl, pescita and her mate trent, enjoyed playing with them, in and out of the water! the keeper said she had given them coconuts before and they like trying to hold them under water ;) they float, so i figure they will get alot of use out of them! after they had played a bit they went back on land and wrestled about! sooo cute! it always looks to me like a wrestle/cuddle/kiss fest all in one! the keeper told me that after they get a new toy they always wrestle lol! ... i had seen a zoo animal enrichment video online and saw otters with them and thought it would be a fun treat to celebrate the day. thankx to keeper hilary for thinking so too and tossing them in so i could watch them play! happy birthday pescita! ... i rarely get good snaps of these two as they are so fast, but i did pretty good today and also took video! the first pic is of pescita, the second is trent, the one with the coconut i forgot and i didn't know who was peeking from the hammock sack but it was super cute!

see the video >

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


first, i missed a timely post yesterday wishing george a happy birthday! even though georgie has moved to point defiance zoo, he is not forgotten by his zoobie friends! i sent him a card with wishes from andiecatt and i. i love and miss you georgie and think about you often! ... today was bititi's birthday! friends and i were lucky that the keeper let us feed her and her giraffe family! we brought nanners and apples. bititi was sure making the most of the celebration and had a ton of treats! glad to be a part of making your birthday special! happy birthday bititi! ... thankx to nica for texting me it was a go, to bob for taking pix, and to keeper nancy for letting us have a giraffe party! being able to feed giraffes is always a special and an amazing experience! ... pix of me and nica feeding the birthday girl, nica giving bday girl a kiss and of me feeding my fav little giraffe boy nik!

you can now view zoo friends birthdates on the calendar page of the photosite! i put the ones for may in and hope to keep up in a timely manner, so you can check each month for your fav zoo friends bday! residents are listed by name, so expand to "list" to view which animal and the year they were born.