We visited the Big Bear Alpine Zoo today. We really wanted to go to the wolf sanctuary, but it was closed for mating season, so we decided a zoo was the next best thing. We did see plenty of wolves there. 🐺
I never have too high of expectations for zoos because I was very fortunate to have an amazing zoo* nearby where I grew up. Unless it’s DC, San Diego or LA, zoos seem to be disappointing. This one was pretty good though for the small amount of space they have. Kids would really enjoy it, even though it’s mostly wilderness animals, like 🦝 and 🐺 and not 🐘 and 🦒. And after 60 years of animal rehabilitation they are finally moving from their 2.5 acre zoo to a new 5.5 acre one that should be completed by this summer. Next fall/winter all of the animals will be living in more spacious homes! So check it out if you’re a Big Bear visitor. They also have presentations at the top of the hour throughout the afternoon so you can learn more about different animals. Did you know raccoons use their hands to learn about an object? It’s cute to watch them eat because they don’t look at the food, they are like a blind person, just feeling the food and deciding whether or not it’s the one they want. They have tiny hairs on their hands that are for their enhanced sense of touch, which comprises 2/3 of their brain. When they want more information about an item they put it in water. Recently it’s been discovered that raccoons aren’t as ocd about being clean (they are actually pretty dirty), but the constant water play is to help them to better understand the object. Their hands are almost like ours, but their thumbs are not opposable so although they can pull open draws and the fridge, take the lid of the trash, and open bags, they can’t pick locks. They are smart and very curious creatures. They have the same level of intelligence as a 3-4 year old.
*The Finney County zoo is awesome! For a small ‘city’ that zoo is incredible!!! If you’re ever traveling through Southwest Kansas I highly suggest you stop at the zoo, and if it’s summer, take a dip in the pool - the largest pool in the world, once upon a time.
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