Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Wild things at the zoo

First thing I saw at the zoo was a red bellied woodpecker. It was right at opening and no one else was around. The trees were full of them. Later when I was leaving I noticed they were all gone.

The zoo was full of these yellow flowers, which were full of bees.

Another late bloomer.  The above baby moorhen was swimming around the gibbon exhibit.

More butterfly art.

Yes, that's a gibbon holding on to the wing of an ibis. I was standing there looking at the baby moorhen when I heard a screaming from a bird. I looked over and the gibbon had grabbed the ibis by the wing when the ibis had wandered to close to the edge. I guess the gibbon thought it would be fun to play with. It was the mother gibbon who grabbed it. The baby gibbon was standing to the left of her.

The ibis started to peck at the gibbon with it's beak. The gibbon let go and was holding a handful of white feathers. I was about ready to jump in the pool to save the ibis (I'm sure the zoo would have loved that).

The captured ibis flew over to the wall once it was released. It seemed to be okay, just missing a few feathers.

On a recent weekend I was on call for work and needed to stay close to home. Since the zoo is only 15 minutes away I ran in for an hour. I hadn't been in several months. The last time I was there the baby spoonbills had left the nest and all I saw were a bunch of empty nests over the alligator exhibit. They won't be back until January or February. It was a pretty quiet morning. The biggest excitement was when the gibbon grabbed the ibis. Everyone was watching. I didn't have the exposure correct on those pictures. I was focusing on the baby moorhen which was swimming in the shadows but when I heard the screaming from the bird I looked over and snapped a couple of pictures really quickly.  The manatee hospital had two newly injured manatees that had arrived. Both were injured from boat strikes. They were in the back pool being fed.


  1. Whoa, that's some good zoo excitement! I am pretty fascinated by all animal behavior so the idea that a gibbon might grab an ibis wing is so interesting to me! The pictures are great despite the exposure issue you mentioned... Thanks for sharing this!

  2. glad that ibis is okay! that could have been a rough encounter!

  3. What a great post! I love all the photos, but this cute baby is my favourite:)

  4. Interesting that the Gibbon would grab the Ibis. It is good that the Ibis wasn't harmed. Bet she doesn't go near a Gibbon again.
    Neat shots of the little Moorhen and Red-bellied!

  5. Glad the ibis got away! Great shots! Love that woodpecker.

  6. wow, these are amazing photo's. the ibis is gorgeous and looks fine!!

  7. The naughty gibbon was probably thinking lunch when he grabbed the ibis.Glad it got away.
    Love the unlovable look of that scruffy little moorhen.

    Nice place to hang out when on call.

  8. A very special story! Thanks for sharing,

  9. Beautiful photos.

    Regards and best wishes