Tuesday, November 8, 2011
Let's Take Pictures at the Franklin Park Zoo!
Recently, I returned to the Franklin Park Zoo to tour with some friends who had never been. I took lots of pictures (which you'll see in this post) and of course did a lot of sketches (saving those for the next post) and met lots of interesting people (oh, they'll be in both posts.)
So first off, this giant hay sculpture which greeted us upon entrance to the Zoo. It's here to celebrate the arrival of the newest additions to the FPZ family: a pair of Red Pandas. It's also bound to scare children.
Let's get the elephant in the room out of the way.
Okay. So, the last time we went to Franklin Park, a large portion of the Zoo was closed off so that the movie "Zookeeper" could be filmed there. As you may imagine, the Zoo has a pretty ambivalent relationship with the movie. On the one hand, certainly attendance has gone up. On the other, how sick do you suppose they are of fielding questions like, "But where are the elephants?" and "You don't really feed the gorillas chain restaurant food, do you?"
Speaking of signs that raise unsettling questions...
So how often do people wear high heels in the Zoo that it's enough of an issue to warrant mention here? And ye Gods, squirt guns?!? Man, I thought the grown-a** adults banging on the glass or clapping or yelling at the sleeping animals were bastards! (Especially since one such character acted all p*ssy like *I* was in the wrong for asking them to quit it. I'll say it again and I won't apologize. There are times when you wouldn't want to witness people getting messily mauled by angry animals and then there are times like this...)
But we're not here to watch humans acting like bastards; we're here to be mammals looking at dinosaurs!
As I mentioned before, the Franklin Park Zoo has a truly awesome Aviary. Apparently, and this is based off the testimony of older relatives who visited often when they were younger, this is the oldest part of the Zoo. Currently, it houses everything from Tawny Frogmouths to these Gouldian Finches. I wonder how many people don't know these little fellows were NOT entirely made up by that printer ad campaign?
Okay, who taunted the gorillas?
Aw, wah. I was looking forward to seeing these guys again. I love that FPZ houses an excellent selection of my favorite animals, none of which are particularly popular.
Which is to say, this is the place to get a plush version of your favorite unpopular endangered species.
These Peafowl were free-roaming throughout the "children's" zoo, which seems to me like a disaster in the making. Now, is this fellow moulting or just growing in a new train?
This Ostrich walked right up to the fence to size me up, it seems. I calmed down quick enough to sketch like crazy and take some reference pictures.
Et voila, Ostrich feets! Note to self: use this next time you draw tyrannosaurus feet.
Sketch of the Day!