Friday, 8 February 2013

Lifescouts: Zoo Badge

The furthest away zoo I have been to is Tokyo Zoo. I went with a best friend and our exchange partners, and  it led to interesting discussions about the difference between English zoo animals and Japanese zoo animals. Exactly why the Japanese exchange was arranged, I would imagine...

The zoo I visited most recently was Edinburgh Zoo, in late August. It was very cool. The zoo boasts the only koalas in the UK, and the only Giant Pandas in Europe. I learnt that these pandas are in fact only on loan to Edinburgh Zoo for ten years, in the hopes that they will be able to coax them into making lots of adorable panda babies. This is problematic because Potential Panda Mummies can only become pregnant on a couple of days in the year. Therefore, a little routine is worked out for the pair in April, when they are put into what the keepers fondly refer to as the 'Love tunnel' and try to make a baby. Last April, the only issue was that Yang Guang, the male panda, was unsure of where everything was supposed to go... The keeper assured us quite cheerfully however that they weren't expecting miracles on the first try (life lessons, kids) and that they would set up the tunnel of Love for the pair again in April 2013. So, crossed fingers in a couple of months.
My little sister, Tian Tian the female panda, and I
Now that I'm thinking about it, I have visited quite a number of zoos. I remember going to Bristol zoo with my cousins. My exact age I can't recall, but I do remember that I was the exact height of a flamingo.

And of course, Skansen, the world's largest open air museum, located in Stockholm, Sweden. Not precisely a zoo, but with a large section reserved for Nordic animals. There I saw Grey Owls and Lynx being fed, as well as reindeer, wolves, bison... and the hibernating bear's enclosure.

I think I like zoos very much. When they're ethically sound and built for conservation rather than entertainment, it's an exciting, family-friendly form of education about our planet. Knowledge, I am always for. Thank you, Alex, for causing me to relive all these pleasant memories.

And so I claim the Zoo badge.

Lifescouts: Zoo Badge
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Yours, zoologically,

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