Archive for the ‘owl’ Category

2014 Cheetah Run at the Cincinnati Zoo   Leave a comment

Labor Day weekend brings the Cincinnati Zoo cheetah run. My wife did the 5K for the second year, this time with my daughter doing a good chunk of it with her.
Caitlin and Rebecca Run 1

I’m quite impressed with their running. I only run if something is chasing me (or I’m late for the bus).
Caitlin and Rebecca Run 2

After the run, we decided to walk around the zoo. Remember Gladys, the orphaned baby gorilla? She’s getting bigger.
Gladys and Friend

But she’s no longer the baby! Asha was born this year. I’m sure when she gets bigger, she’ll be a great playmate for Gladys.
Baby Asha

We stopped to say “hi” to Renji and Nubo. Renji was wondering what was with all the smelly(-er-than-usual) people.
Renji Wonders What's With All the Sweaty Humans

Nubo just set about making sure his paws were clean.
Cleaning the Toes

Inside, I got some good pictures of the black-footed cats. They were quite active that morning.
Pondering BFC

BFC Watching Me

Lounging BFC

The sand cat took a great leap!
Jumping Sand Cat

The caracal’s enclosure was quite fogged over that morning, creating a cloudy view. However, she just looked so cute, I had to take get the best shot I could of her.
Dreamy Miss Caracal

Dobby the pygmy owl saw us out.
Pygmy Owl

We had a great morning! The Cheetah Run is a wonderful fundraiser for one of the best zoos in the country!
Caitlin and Rebecca Run 3

Bouncy Snow Leopard   Leave a comment

The Marvin Lewis Community Fund sponsored Learning is Cool. Cincinnati Public School students who were on the “A” honor role twice were invited to an evening at the zoo, and receive a medal, given by members of a local sports team. Once again, my daughter was on the “A” honor role four times. Of course we would go to the zoo!

John the lion has a new pal, Imani.
John and Hiding Imani

She’s pretty!
Imani

John must think so, too, as he’s trying to look his best.
John's Bath

They do make a cute couple.
John and Imani

Nearby cheetahs were looking like bookends. No runs were scheduled that evening.
Cheetah Bookends

Gizmo, an African white-faced owl, was out. We saw him before. He’s quite cute.
Gizmo!

A red panda was in the tree, grooming.
Firefox Bath

One of the Malayan tigers was demonstrating his camouflage in the tall grass.
Tiger in the Grass

A cougar was relaxing in a less-than-camouflaged fashion.
Lazy Cougar

The highlight for me was Nubo and Renji.
Handsome Nubo

The snow leopard duo were bouncing off the walls!
Bouncing Off the Walls

Who says cheetahs are the only cats who can sprint.
Who Says Cheetahs are the Only Sprinters?

We got to see a baby flamingo.
Flamingo Baby

Later, they paraded by.
Flamingo Parade

Before we left, we said “hi” to Louisiana girl Sayia.
Seyia

It was an enjoyable evening at the zoo.

HallZOOWeen Twenty-Thirteen   Leave a comment

DSC_2673

The Cincinnati Zoo wrapped up HallZOOween this weekend. We always enjoy going. My daughter went as Hello Kitty.
Tail

We got to see Gizmo, the African white-faced owl, again. He had just come to Cincinnati last time we got to meet him. He’s really a cool bird.
Gizmo!

Nearby, we got to see all three members of our giraffe family.
DSC_2630

John the lion looked increadibly regal.
Golden John

He was very interestedin what we were doing.

John on the Ridge

The artic foxes are changing from their summer to winter coats. Still, there were a fwe spots of grey.
Getting Out His Winter Coat

The black bear was taking a nap.
Practice Nap

I’m really not sure what this cougar was looking at (I can’t tell if it was Joseph or Techumseh without seeing their face). Watching them, I could see my cats’ moves in them.
What Does He See?

Nubo was looking for something, too.
What Does Nubo See?

It simply bored Renji.
Renji Sings!

Nubo then wandered off.
Nubo Stalks

We’ve become quite taken with red pandas–they’re definitely towards the top of my non-cat list.
Firefox Strut

The zoo has a baby red panda, but he wasn’t out. I suspect this was one of his parents, eating bamboo.
Nomming Bamboo

Overall, it was a great day at the zoo.

An Afternoon at Hueston Woods   5 comments

Cougar CaveI’ve been making trips to Oxford, Ohio on my bike a couple times this month, even doing a loop of Hueston Woods State Park. While doing a loop of Hueston Woods was one of my favorite bike rides while in college, I rarely went beyond it.

However, we were looking for something to do on a Saturday afternoon, and I came up with the idea of going out there. I figure we could be nostalgic alumni, having a late lunch at Bagel and Deli. This was one of our favorite places to grab a sandwich while my wife and I were in college. Afterwards, we could go to Hueston Woods State Park, and hike some of their trails. My wife thought it would be fun to go down to Acton Lake, which centers the park. The other advantage is that it set us up for going to the original location of Jungle Jim’s, as we needed some things we thought we could only get there.

The deal was sealed when we discovered their nature center had a cougar. The web page suggested they just got it–cougar cubs are awesome! There was no date on the post, so it could well have grown up by now. Still, it would be great to see the cat.

We got a bit of a late start–we didn’t get to Oxford until a quarter of Four. Our late lunch (or is it now and early supper?) would be a picnic. We drove to the Nature Center. One neat thing was that most signs not only detailed facts about the animal, but also their names. Timber, the cougar, was in his enclosure, hanging out in his house.
Shy Timber

Next door Eli, a bobcat, was having supper. Eli was originally a pet, but his owners could not continue to care for him, so he was surrendered to a wildlife rescue. Prior to that, he was declawed, so there is no way he could be released into the wild. Things I believe that this underscores: wild cats aren’t pets, and declawing is bad.
Eli's Supper

The Nature Center was also home to a Raptor Rehabilitation Center. Several birds of prey were present. Nannok is a rough tailed hawk.
Nannok the Rough-Tailed Hawk

Next to Nannook was a great horned owl, whose name I didn’t catch.
Great Horned Owl

The largest enclosure was for a bald eagle.
Bald Eagle

Rose is a red-tailed hawk.
Rose the Red-Tailed Hawk

A close-up of the hawk’s eye.
Eye of the Hawk

Clyde, the barred owl, kept looking away. I finally said, “Clyde, can I please take your picture?” He turned to look at me. Handsome owl!
Clyde the Barred Owl

My personal favorite, however, was Rachel the kestrel.
Rachel the Kestrel

After checking out the nature center, we had our bagels, enjoying the unseasonable-for-August weather, which was absolutely pleasant. Then, we went to the Cedar Falls trail, and started hiking.
Creek Bed

Creek Valley

Blue Rock Falls

What's Down There?

We saw wild crawfish.
Wild Crawfish

“Daddy, can I take a picture with your camera?”
DSC_1415

After our hike, we went to the beach at Acton Lake.
Sailing on Acton Lake

Seagulls and geese…an odd combination.
Geese and Seagulls

Summer strut

Lakewatch

We left as the sun was starting to set. As we drove around the loop, we noticed all the other things at Hueston Woods: horse rental, archery, even tree climbing. It’s amazing how many things are in this area–and it’s not that far from home. We’ll definitely have to come back.

Posted 2013-08-19 by Mr. Guilt in animals, birds, bobcat, cats, cougars, Family, Ohio, owl

All Over the Toronto Zoo   1 comment

A six hour drive westward brought us from Montreal to Toronto, where Canada’s largest zoo is located. The Toronto Zoo has a large collection of animals, as well as visitors in the parking lot.
Birds on Cars

In terms of area, this is the largest zoo I’ve seen with the exceptions of the Wilds and the San Diego Zoo Wild Animal Park. Most of the large animals had enormous enclosures. For example, the bison practically had a prairie.
Bison in the Field

The Bison were in the Canadian Domain section. Half of the small cats we saw were there. Two Canadian Lynxes were hanging out in the drizzle. One was trying to hide from the rain.
Lynx Hiding from the Rain

The other didn’t let it deter him.
Lynx in the Rain

They also had a pair of cougars. When we were standing there, we learned that a government agency released a couple of cougars to take care of an overpopulation of fishers, a fierce member of the weasel problem.
Relaxed Cougar

We saw plenty of “moose crossing” signs as we drove through Quebec, but never saw a moose (or a deer, for that matter). We watched this gentle giant enjoy his lunch.
Moose (No Squirrel)

The big thrill in Canadian Domain was the grizzly. One appeared to be juvenile.
Romping Young Grizzly

The boisterous youngster seemed to be intent on playing with an older bear. Personally, I wouldn’t mess with her.
Mama Bear

Adjacent to the Canadian Domain was the Tundra Trek, showing the animals of the Arctic.
Peeping Wolf

Our favorite was the Arctic wolves.
Arctic Wolf

The Arctic fox was displaying his summer coat.
Arctic Fox, Summer Coat

Sleep-Walking

I liked the snowy owl.
Snowy Owl

The polar bear was having a lazy afternoon.
In a Cave

One thing I found interesting was an inuksuk, a marking stone used by the Inuit.
Inuksuk

The America’s section was home to the otters.
Underwater Otter

We always love the antics of river otters.
Otter on the Float

Waving Otter
Hi there!

The spectacled owls watched us as we entered.
Spectacled Owls

One enclosure had parrots and capybaras. A capybara got a bit too curious about the parrots’ goings on.
Nosy Capybara

He was escorted off their perch.
Pushy Parrot

The Toronto Zoo has two jaguars. One is tawny, taking a bath.
Bathing Jaguar

The other was melanistic. It looked a little like Luna.
Black Cat

The cheetah keeper was giving a talk at 1:30. We got there at 1:27, and saw no cats. Right as my watched hit half-past, we saw a head.
Peeking Cheetah

Zeek the cheetah knew when he’d get a snack.
Zeek Looks for His Snack

Happy Cheetah

Such a handsome cat.
DSC_9800

Phhhht!
Phhhhhbt!

Next door was a white lion pride. A male.
Lion Meatloafing

…and two females.
Lionesses

We watched them for a bit. I think we bored him.
Dreamy Lion

Obviously, this was in the Africa section, also home to Southern white rhinos.
Rhino Butt!

The antelope played in the drizzle.
Antelope

And African elephants. African elephants have larger ears than their Asian counterparts.
African Elephant

I’ve seen plenty of pictures of sugar gliders, but I don’t think I’ve seen one in person before.
Sugar Glider

This was in the indoor Australia exhibit. I liked the reptiles, such as a one year old emerald tree boa.
Juvenile Emerald Tree Boa

The bearded dragon just watched.
Bearded Dragon

A sign indicated that their clouded leopard was an older cat, and the zoo keepers were trying to keep her comfortable. She simply dozed as an older feline should.
Tired Cloudie

The gaur is a fairly rare species–from what I can tell, the Toronto Zoo is the only one in North america who has them. Also known as the Indian Bison, it is the tallest species of wild cattle.
Gaar

The spider tortoise is one of the smallest of the tortoise species.
Spider Tortoise

Only one of the two subspecies of tiger, the Sumatran tiger, was visible when we went.
Relaxed Tiger

A reindeer was sprinting around his enclosure. It was fun to watch him run.
Reindeer Sprint!

The Toronto Zoo is getting two giant pandas on a five-year loan.
Panda, from Above

There was a large “Interpretive Center” on the way in, speaking about these creatures. It left me perplexed: they eat only one species of bamboo, but only get nutrients from about half of what they consume. They eat all of their waking life. Have they become overspecialized?
Panda with Bamboo

The Eurasian exhibit was, for the most part, closed. A tram went through part of it. We were told we could see the snow leopard, and given a series of wrong directions, leading us to circumnavigate much of the zoo, only to finally find out that, while the snow leopards were still at the zoo, they could not be seen while we were there. This exhibit is being remodeled, set to open in 2014. This was a major disappointment to me.

However, it was still a very impressive zoo. We were there pretty much from opening to close, and I’m not entirely sure how we would have fit in another section during our time there. The exhibits were well done, and there was a lot of space for the animals living there.

The Big World at the Cincinnati Zoo   5 comments

We heard that Savanna, the cheetah cub, was making appearances before the cheetah run. Last weekend we thought we’d go see her, however, we got a late start, and barely made it to the show. Unfortunately, she only came out right before the show, and missed her! Still, we did get to see Sihil the ocelot. She demonstrated the ocelot’s ability to climb head first. They have bowed legs and very flexible ankles to facilitate this.
Grabbing the "Tree"

Minnow came out. Here, she is waiting for her trainer to throw the fish into the pond, for her to jump after.
Waiting for the Fish

I think this is the first time I saw Quilliam, the porcupine, this year.
Quilliam

Tommy T ran…then braked!
Tommy Brakes!

The Running Yard is near the giraffes. They watched us walk by.
Catching the Attention of Giraffes

We wanted to see the Night Hunters and Cat Canyon. On the way, a keeper had Gizmo out. He is a African White-Faced Owl. At eight months old, he’s fully grown, and just now getting to see the public. This was the first time he was in this particular location, behind the Reptile House. He was taking it all in.
Gizmo!

It’s a big world out here. Isn’t it, Gizmo?
Gizmo Explores the Great, Big World!

The tigers were dozing at Cat Canyon.
Sleepy Tiger

Snow Leopards Renji and Nubo were in a cuddle puddle when we got to their enclosure.
Snow Leopard Cuddle Puddle

However, Nubo heard a squirrel. He got up and walked over to check it out.
Nubo Stares at a Squirrel

Renji was not amused.
Renji Is Not Amused

Nubo eventually tired of the squirrel, bringing out a big yawn.
Snow Leopard Yawn

It seemed to be contagious.
Cougar Yawn!

In Night Hunters, the ocelot was staring at…something.
Ocelot Watching His Stream

At the clouded leopards, there was a real treat…
Stretched Out on a Log

It was their sunrise–they turned on the lights. One of the cloudies was climbing around.
Stumped

The other was watching him…suspiciously. Their eyes are so intense!
Watching!

The fishing cat seems so sullen these days. I hope they find her a new friend.
Mamma Fishing Cat

The bobcat is handsome…and he knows it.
Handsome Bobcat

The fennec fox cubs got bigger since the last time we were there.
Fennec Fox Cub

Still, they are bouncing all over, and pestering each other like good siblings should.
Bugged by Sis

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