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Showing posts with label Toronto Zoo. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Toronto Zoo. Show all posts

Monday, 20 May 2019

Capybara (The World's Biggest Rodent)

A Capybara Sits On The Grass.

Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Address:  2000 Meadowvale Road
Date: May 2019
Website: www.torontozoo.com

  Some people may be surprised to learn that the world's biggest rodent is not a rat found in the New York subway system.  The title belongs to South America's capybara which weighs up to 65 kg, stands almost 2 feet tall and can grow up to 4 feet long.  We have come across capybara at several zoos, but had a real close encounter at the Toronto Zoo.

  Diego the capybara lives at the Toronto Zoo.  The zoo just recently started some Wild Encounter programs.  We were able to learn more about him as well as feed him a treat of some fresh lettuce.  Capybara are herbivores and eat only plants.  In fact the name capybara translates roughly to "master of the grasses".  All rodents have teeth that constantly grow and must gnaw on things to wear the teeth down.  As we fed the lettuce we had to make sure not to get near those teeth.

Capybara's Webbed Feet.

  Capybara are semi-aquatic and spend most of their time in the water.  They have webbed feet which helps make them great swimmers.  Their nostrils and eyes are high on their face so they can breathe and see above the water, but if they have to, a capybara can stay under water for up to 5 minutes.

The Behind Of A Capybara.

  Capybara have a high rounded back.  Diego looks kind of like a coconut with legs in the photo above.

Capybara And A Waterfall.

  The other capybara at the Toronto Zoo can be found near the waterfall in the Americas section.  Diego prefers to keep by himself and lives in the Kid's Zoo not that far from his relative the guinea pig.

Capybara eating in the water.

  The keepers said that Diego was about 6 years old.   We think that the photo above may have been taken while Diego, his brother and parents enjoyed a family dinner together.

High Park Capybara Family.

  In Toronto there are also capybara at the High Park Zoo.  Two of the High Park capybara are famous for escaping.  One of them wasn't found for almost a month before being returned to the zoo.  In the photos and video above you can see the runaways with their babies.  Baby capybara are called pups.

A Capybara During Feeding Time.

  Feeding the capybara was fun and Diego was friends with whoever had a piece of lettuce.  Once all the lettuce was gone he went off to the other side of his enclosure to be by himself again.  It was great to see and learn about this amazing rodent up close.   Next time we are in New York City though, we would still like the rats to keep to themselves.

Click here to take a virtual tour and see our collection of Toronto Zoo animal photos.

Map of Our World
Toronto Zoo (Kids Zoo) , High Park Zoo

Post # 251

Sunday, 10 February 2019

Year of The Pig

Chinese Zodiac Pig Sign
  1. Hawaiian Pigs
  2. Babirusa
  3. CNE Pigs
  4. Miss Piggy
  5. Miss Piggy
  6. Red River Hog
  7. Tamworth Pigs
  8. Pig Pot at the ROM
  9. Pigman at the Campbell House
  10. Warthogs
  People born in the Year of the Pig are said to be thoughtful, polite, reliable, courageous and ready to help others.  They can also be naive, and self-indulgent.  2019 is the Year of the Pig according to the Chinese zodiac.  To celebrate here are 10 of our favourite swine encounters. Oink Oink.

1 ) Hawaiian Pigs
Mini Pigs At Dan's Green House in Maui

Dan's Green House is located in the town of Lahaina, on the island of Maui, in Hawaii.  They have exotic plants and rare birds as well as mini pigs.  We got a chance to spend some time with these two little guys.  Aren't they just the cutest?

2)  Babirusa
Babirusa with a keeper at the Toronto Zoo.

Speaking of cute, we are sorry but babirusa are just the opposite.  They have long legs, weird curvy tusks and look like all of their hair just fell out.  They are only found on a few islands in Indonesia and are unforgettable.  We saw this pair at the Toronto Zoo.

3)  CNE Pigs
Pig feeding her litter at Canadian National Exhibition.

When the Canadian National Exhibition comes to Toronto at the end of each summer so does "The Farm".  You can experience the sights and smells of livestock.  There are always lots of pigs and usually one big sow who spends her day constantly feeding her litter of piglets.

4)  Miss Piggy
Miss Piggy in Wedding Gown at Museum of The Moving Image.

In Queens, New York the Museum of the Moving Image has a Jim Henson Exhibition.  Miss Piggy is one of our favourite Muppets and favourite pigs.  Here she is in her wedding gown ready for her big day.

5)  Miss Piggy
Miss Piggy Plane crash site in Churchill Manitoba.

This Miss Piggy is a crashed freight plane.  It can be found in Churchill, Manitoba still sitting where it crashed in 1979.  Miss Piggy the Muppet made her debut in 1974.  We have read that the plane is named after Miss Piggy because it was overloaded or it once carried a cargo of pigs.

Front of Miss Piggy Plane in Churchill Manitoba.

 We think it should be called Miss Piggy because of its flat snout.

Miss Piggy plane engine in Churchill Manitoba.

  By the way Miss Piggy, your engine is way over here.  Also watch out for polar bears hiding amongst the rocks and wreckage.

6)  Red River Hog
Red River Hog At The Toronto Zoo.

The red river hog is a colourful African pig.  We like its whiskers and red coat.  It turns out that we have a fondness for animals with red coloured fur.

7)  Tamworth Pigs
Tamworth Pigs At Riverdale Farm.

Based on our previously professed love of red furred anuimals you can see why we like Tamworth pigs.  They are one of the oldest breeds of pigs.  You can also see the curly little tail in the photo above that makes pigs even more appealing.  These pigs are from Toronto's Riverdale Farm.

8)  Pig Pot at the ROM
Pig Shaped Pot At The Royal Ontario Museum

This pig shaped vessel was at the Royal Ontario Museum.  We imagine it could be filled with some sort of liquid which could then be poured out of the spout in the snout.  We didn't make note of what was listed as its intended purpose and often the museum uncovers artifacts whose purpose is only assumed.

9 ) Pigman at the Campbell House
Campbell House Museum.

We took this photo of the Campbell House Museum in Toronto.  The Campbell House was built in 1822 and was actually moved to where it sits today.  Looking at our photo later we noticed something odd.

Man Dressed Like A Pig At The Campbell House in Toronto

There was a well dressed pig man on the grounds.  We hope he was there for an event or promotion at the museum. 

10 ) Warthogs
Warthogs At A Waterhole In Greater Kruger Park.

We took a trip to Africa and encountered many wild warthogs.  We watched them come and go at a waterhole in Greater Kruger in South Africa.  We also watched them mow the lawn in Zimbabwe beside the mighty Zambezi River.

A Warthog Kneels On The Grass At A'Zambezi Lodge.

Because warthogs have such short necks they usually have to kneel down on their front legs to eat grass.  In the video below, various African animals eat beside a waterhole until the warthogs come and take over.

New Year Celebrations At Scarborough Town Centre.

  That is our list of favourite pigs.  We took part in some celebrations at the Scarborough Town Centre for the Chinese New Year.  You can celebrate and enjoy pigs all year long.

Map of Our World
Post # 241

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Feline Frenzy At Toronto Zoo

The Cheetah Family.

Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Address:  2000 Meadowvale Road
Date: Sept 2017
Website: www.torontozoo.com

  The Toronto Zoo has seen another baby boom.  This time it is of the furry, feline variety.   There are 9 little cubs from 3 different species.  After a few months of being off display, the cubs now have daily viewing times.  

Mom Means Business.

  The first to arrive were a handful of African cheetah cubs born at the end of April, 2017.  These 5 cubs consist of 3 boys and 2 girls.  Through the years there have been 53 cheetahs born at the Toronto Zoo.
Mother's Watchful Eye.

  The cubs are always under mother's watchful eye.  Whether they are lazing around together under a tree (top photo of blog) or heading out during feeding time, she is on the alert.

A Cautious Cub Approaches.

  During feeding time the cubs cautiously headed towards the front of their enclosure.

Cutey Cheetah.

  A few moments later they became more comfortable and lounged around on the rocks.

Three Little Cheetahs.
 Lunch Flys Overhead.

  A goose flew overhead and almost made the fatal mistake of landing into the enclosure.  Usually the Canada Geese at the zoo walk around like they own the place, but they wouldn't last very long against the fastest land animal on earth.  Especially if outnumbered six to one.

Clouded Leopard Girls.

  The next babies to arrive at the zoo were two clouded leopard sisters born in May, 2017.  Their mother was a first time mother and was not caring for the cubs properly so zoo staff had to take over.

Let's Play Pounce On The Stick.
 Up To Mischief.

  The clouded leopards are only on display for a brief playtime each day.  As soon as they get outside they are ready to jump or climb on anything they can.

Clouded Leopard Baby.

  Their parents are inside the Malayan Woods Pavilion while the zoo keepers have the task of raising and feeding the babies.  The babies are in the lion-tailed macaque exhibit and the macaques have been temporarily displaced.  We noticed the macaques on a pole while riding the zoomobile through Eurasia.

I Think I Can See Our House From Here.

  Another pair of babies is also located in Eurasia.  A few days after the clouded leopards were born, a trio of snow leopards were also born.  Sadly, one of the cubs did not survive.  

Momma's Girl.

  The remaining brother and sister are on display with their mother.

There's No Leopard Like A Snow Leopard.

  They are still a little shy and the brother likes to climb as high as he can and then hide behind the rocks.  In the wild, snow leopards are found at high altitudes on mountain ranges such as the Himalayas.  That shyness will soon disappear as they continue to grow.  Like all wild animals, it won't be long until they are just as big and strong as their parents. Visit them soon if you can.

Click here to take a virtual tour and see our collection of Toronto Zoo animal photos.

Map of Our World
Toronto Zoo (Cheetahs) , Toronto Zoo (Malayan Woods Pavilion) , Toronto Zoo (Eurasia)

Post # 194

Thursday, 20 July 2017

The Toronto Zoo

Welcome to Toronto Zoo.

Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Address:  2000 Meadowvale Road
Date: July 2017
Website: www.torontozoo.com

Click here to take a virtual tour and see our collection of Toronto Zoo animal photos.

   The Toronto Zoo opened in August 1974 and we have been frequent visitors through the years.  The zoo is divided into geographic regions and each area contains birds, animals, fish, bugs and plants from that region.
Toronto Zoo Birds. (Purple Gallinule)
Toronto Zoo Animals. (Greater Kudu)
Toronto Zoo Fish. (Quoy's Parrotfish)
Toronto Zoo Insects. (Thorny Devil Stick Insect)
Toronto Zoo Plants.
Toronto Zoo Birds. (Pekin Robin)
Toronto Zoo Animals. (Siberian Tiger)
Toronto Zoo Reptiles. (San Esteban Island Chuckwalla)

This makes you feel like you are traveling the world during a visit.  In fact, Toronto Zoo is one of the biggest zoos in the world.

Toronto Zoo Globe.

   The main areas of the zoo are Africa, Canada, Indomalaya, Americas, Australasia and Eurasia.  Some of the areas have indoor pavilions with huge glass roofs such as the African Pavilion below.

African Pavilion.

  For those who don't wish to walk the zoo, there is a zoomobile that will take you to each of the different areas.


We have written blogs about the zoo many times.  We could go on and on about how much we love the zoo, but we feel that pictures say it best.

Click here to take a virtual tour and see our collection of Toronto Zoo animal photos.

Map of Our World
Toronto Zoo

Post # 183