Sunday, July 15, 2018

A trip to the zoo, part 2

Before we begin, I wanted to correct something Jeanie said in her comment yesterday.  I don't want to mislead anyone since Jeanie hoped I would see them again before they left.  Jeanie, and all my other readers, friends, and followers, these three stayed at my home for five days.  They flew to Wichita by themselves with their aunt's permission.  As much as those children have been through already in their lives, I can see why their aunt was so receptive to their visiting me.

In case you missed part 1, you can see it here.  Continuing our walk around the exhibit,

we stopped for a few minutes to admire the lovely flowers and greenery planted around a pond that was next to the wildlife exhibit.

I liked how natural everything looked, including the walkway around the pond.

Back to the exhibits, we never saw the beaver, but we had a chance to speak with the volunteer who was taking care of the cages that day.  You can see him in the background.

Although we hunted high and low, the beaver eluded us.

Then it was off to the next cage where we were all entertained by this bird.

The bobcat is the other animal we never saw that day.  I actually feel sorry for him because he has no mate to share his time with.  For some reason, I'm a bit like Noah and want the animals to be paired two by two.

We were now coming round to the final two sections.  Along with that was the heat and crowds that were beginning to form.  We were no longer alone at this exhibit.

There were certainly lots of fowl in this exhibit.

The youngsters laughed as I tried to get the turtle in focus.  You have NO idea how many photos I took trying to get that fence out of view.

Finally a decent shot, and it was also crowded with several fowl in the photo.  I'm not sure what is worse: photographing images behind glass or through screen fencing.

This bird put on quite a show for us, though.

By this time, I had walked around the corner (this cage could be viewed from two sides) and gotten a different shot of the turtle.

I even watched as water fowl paddled by.

We tried to identify the various fowl.

The youngsters were busy counting off the various fowl, animals, and amphibians they found.

The oldest had a small notebook in a backpack, and wrote the names as they found each of the creatures.  One of the youngsters found all the animals online:
▪ One beaver, known as Chapa
▪ One bobcat, known as Bobby
▪ One skunk, known as Scenthia
▪ One possum, known as Virgil
▪ Two Swainson’s hawks
▪ One red-tailed hawk
▪ One turkey vulture
▪ One red-shouldered hawk
▪ Two great horned owls
▪ Two screech owls
▪ One yellow-crowned night heron
▪ One black-crowned night heron
▪ One American kestrel
▪ Two wood ducks
▪ One blue-winged teal
▪ One Franklin’s gull
▪ Six ornate box turtles, the state reptile
▪ Eight Eastern box turtles
▪ One common snapping turtle
▪ One river cooter turtle
▪ One false map turtle
▪ One painted turtle
▪ Three slider turtles
▪ Eight bobwhite quail
I was pleased to see how many of the animals they had actually found before they printed out the list the next day.

When we got back to the beginning,

image from internet
the youngsters found a gazebo which they wanted to check out.   That was actually an interactive water fountain.

I couldn't believe no one was there and the fountain wasn't turned on for the children to run through the water that spurts out of the concrete pavement.

It was getting hot and I was ready for some air conditioning, but children are far more resilient when it comes to heat.

Off we went to the gazebo,

where they sat and ate energy bars they had stuffed in their backpacks that morning.  The rest of the photos at the gazebo had the youngsters in them, so they are for the family's eyes only.

taken from internet
One final area we visited was the solar calendar in the same park.

I couldn't use any of the photos I had taken because at least one of the youngsters was in every photo.  I had to rely on those I found on the internet to share with you.

The metal solar eye (explained below)

All solar calender photos taken from the internet
It was a great teaching moment as we discussed the solar calender, how the tiled stones, made of limestone, resembled Stonehenge, and how the solar calendar was situated in such a way as to show sunrise, sunset, and noon on the first day of each season/Equinox.  The tiles apparently depict constellations and astrological signs, along with the metal eye that aligns and illuminates a colored glass stone embedded in the ground that glows for a few minutes on the first day of every Equinox.   We also found a nearby detailed description of how the calendar works.

Thank you for joining me today (and yesterday, of course) as we discovered this newly renovated Kansas Wildlife Exhibit and park that is no more than two miles from my home.  And the youngsters had a great time, too!

16 thoughtful remarks:

Sami said...

Hi Elizabeth, just read part 1 of this post too and hope you're feeling much better! Nothing worse than having a cold during Summer!
How wonderful that the children visited you, you obviously mean a lot to them. What a pity many of the animals were hiding due to the heat probably, it reminded me of a visit to our Zoo when my parents were here 2 years ago and most of the animals were hiding from the heat too.
Love the solar calendar, the tiles, the Stonehenge look, nicely done indeed!
Have a nice Sunday.

Valerie-Jael said...

Beautiful photos! Valerie

My name is Erika. said...

Nice photos. Kids can be a lot of fun but wear you out too these photos look like you had some fun. Hope you are recovering quickly. Hugs erika

Helen said...

it's a real pain trying to photograph things at zoos or where they have to protect exhibits from us (or us from the exhibits, lol) isn't it! Love the stones though.

Helen said...

the stones of the solar calendar I mean, not the stones in the zoo!!!

RO said...

My goodness Elizabeth, what fun! It's been years since I visited a zoo, but I've been watching zoo shows on tv, which is definitely not the same. The scenery looks pretty amazing! Hugs...and Happy Sunday! RO

kathyinozarks said...

Good morning, I loved all of the photos Elizabeth-a lovely zoo-and I appreciate all the work to set up this post too
Hope you are feeling better today-Happy Sunday Kathy

CJ Kennedy said...

Sounds like you all had a grand time at the zoo. The pond area was really lovely and the solar calendar was so cool.

froebelsternchen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
froebelsternchen said...

I am in awe of this Kansas Wildlife Exhibit - it was just amazing to see all this animals ! I would try to take a photo straight through one of those grids - but I think that wasn't possible?! Thank you for taking me with you! I am also with you about Noah's principle- That's the reason we have two dogs and I had always two cats together in the past!
This solar calender and stones are stunning! Stupendous!
I really hope you feel better today! Get well soon my friend!
Big hugs,

Meggymay said...

You did a great job getting the photos with the animals and birds through the cages. I think I would have given up.
I loved all the photos and was really interested in the ones of the solar calendar.
Hope you are feeling a bit better today.
Yvonne xx

Divers and Sundry said...

2 miles from your home? Now that would suit me fine :)

I'm impressed with those stone pieces. I'm not surprised the kids were in all those shots; I'd have been right up there with them. Fascinating.

It looks like y'all have had the best time together!

Rita said...

Sounds like they had a wonderful visit!
I hope you feel better soon. :)

craftytrog said...

Thank you for a lovely visit to the zoo Elizabeth! It looks like your young visitors had a wonderful time, and so nice that they requested to visit you.
Take care of yourself,
Alison xxx

Dianne said...

quite a wonderful zoo, and really cool solar calendar! Sorry to read that you have been very sick again! Hope you are feeling better very soon...I know those bugs that cause coughing take what seems like forever to get over!! do take care of yourself dear friend...♥

pearshapedcrafting said...

This does look like a proper fun day out - even though you could have done with air con!! The solar calendar looks fascinating and I am sure your impromptu lesson was useful! Hugs, Chrisx