sfzoo II


there was one pair of “kittens” in a cage next to the gorgeous sleek ocelots. this pair was born in june. they were pretty big–we didn’t really have a basis for comparison, though, because we couldn’t see the adult one in her exhibit. there was a blue plastic kiddie pool filled with water, which is a hack if i ever saw one, but the “kitten” in it seemed to be enjoying itself, playing with something white and slippery that we could only guess was previously something that was alive.

and there was one pair of kittens that was REALLY little! they were just born in september (what a huge difference two months makes in size. geez). they looked like housecats, but they had very distinctive stripes on their heads and dots on their bodies, and their faces are longer than housecats. and their movements are otter-like, i think. they pounced on each other and batted a bouncy ball back and forth (just like housecats!)… and then swatted at a plastic toy in a tub of water (not like housecats!) and put their heads underwater to catch things and stuff. eeeeek they were so cute!

ryan will post movies and pictures soon.

FISHING CATS!!!!! have you ever heard of them before?!?!??!?!?!?!?!? they supposedly have partially WEBBED FEET! and they FISH!!!! fish fish fish fish. CAT!!!

and another thing that impressed me was the snow leopard we got really close to. it paced in its cage, back and forth and wound itself around this pole, again and again, and at one point in this loop it was only 2 feet away from us. the first few times it came towards us we giggled, so once it stopped and looked at us, but didn’t even blink in our direction after that. it is scary and big and graceful and furry and its paws thump and you could hear it breathe. the tails of snow leopards are longer and thicker than you expect (the sign said it was because they live in high altitudes and do lots of climbing, so they need longer tails for balance issues). they’re really, really pretty.

and we were at the lion house for feeding time! ryan likes tigers more, but i’ll always be partial to the lions. such majesty. there were (huge) furry lion cubs that the trainer petted affectionately. hee hee. man, lions are so impressive.

yeah. i like big cats. a lot. ryan thinks the next version of os x should be called fishing cat. that would go over well, right?

we were disappointed that the aye-ayes are no longer at the sfzoo (they should update their webpage!!!)–they said “we gave them back to duke university” … sigh. the insect house has lots of gross insects. the flamingos were sleeping all day. the lorikeets are in san diego cuz it’s too cold for them here. the laughing kookaburra was frickin’ hilarious–something i’ve never heard before. i’ve also never seen prarie dogs giving warning signals to each other before–a whole crapload of prarie dogs were hanging out, scurrying around in the dirt, doing their own thing, and all of a sudden the ringleader chirped and EVERY single one stopped what they were doing and got in the same pose and waggled their tails… it was seriously VERY weird. finally the ringleader jumped and barked, which caused a few other scattered ones around to jump and bark in the same way, and they all went back to doing their business. it was so weird! meercats are weird too, half of them scurried up and watched a hawk, then an airplane go by, and all looked in the exact same direction like so many slightly melted taper candles, and then sat back as if in a big leather easy chair. and giraffes are really tall.

hee hee hee!!!


  1. stephentyrone holds forth on fishing cats

    also known as “fisher cats”, very common in the river valleys in new england, though i’d guess they probably used to live throughout the eastern US. not actually cats; they’re more like very fiesty river otters, or maybe aquatic badgers. who knows. anyway, besides fish, they eat house cats, which makes them a bit unpopular with people.

    1. …correction…

      hmmm… after consulting ryan’s video, i realize that we’re talking about the *other* (non-river-otter-like) type of “fishing cat”; the ones in question *are* in fact cats, and aren’t from the eastern US. (south america, I think?) the “fishing cat” that I had in mind is black and more otter-like. interesting.

      1. Re: …correction…

        yes. i am sure that the fishing cats at the sfzoo are actually cats. they live in wetlands in asia, around india i think.

        i just replied to your other post saying “no, they’re actually cats, and i’m sure because, well, at the very least, they were in the ‘feline conservatory’ part of the zoo.” i’ll go delete that reply now. =)

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