Tag Archives: Wellington Zoo

Weekly photo challenge: Up

Up close and respectful of Zara

Up close and respectful of Zara

I must apologise to all of you lovely people who’ve chosen to follow my blog. My recent inactivity is due to total pre-occupation in securing a new job.

My life has taken a totally different turn. My new job is at Wellington Zoo – not as a keeper mind you. My new role is to ensure the business thrives now and into the future.

I am SO happy – as happy as a pig in clover in fact!

I am surrounded by the cheerful chatter of animals and children all day long. Every day I learn more about the wonderful animals we share our world with, and appreciate more the love and skills of those who care for them. It is fascinating and so rewarding. In the photograph I was being shown how to feed a lion (not that I need to in my job) – it was all about raising the tasty morsel of meat in my flat palm UP to the netting, and letting the lioness take the meat from me. My first two attempts were abysmal as fear made me pull my hand away too quickly.

But on my third attempt, I held my palm up and felt the gently stroke of Zara’s tongue, and the soft fur of her muzzle.

What an incredible privilege!

I love my new job … the idea of working in a zoo had never registered on my radar even though I absolutely love animals. I was determined to work in arts for the rest of my working life, honing my skills toward that end.

My surprising change in direction came as the result of a chance encounter.

Further endorsing what I have always told my children – make the most of every opportunity!

Weekly photo challenge: the Kiss

Nothing like a mother's love

Nothing like a mother’s love

This morning, camera in  hand, I took myself off to Wellington Zoo. I’m embarrassed to admit that I haven’t been there for years – since my now adult children were little! We’ve had such a gorgeous spell of weather lately and I decided that, in my ‘between jobs’ state, I should see for myself all the changes that have been made at the zoo in the intervening years.

I was not disappointed. In fact, I was totally entranced. I ended up spending the best part of three hours there vowing to myself to make regular visits from now on.

I could ramble on and on about the fabulous events Wellington Zoo offers, but it’s best to check out their website if you’re interested. I was prompted to go today because of an article in this morning’s Dominion Post about a baby Royal Penguin which had been found on Sunday at Tora Beach on the Wairarapa Coast. The sick penguin, after being cared for overnight, was taken to Wellington Zoo. Royal Penguins, the article tells us, live about 2000 kilometres distant on Macquarie Island where the temperatures is around 8 degrees celsius. A far cry from our recent temperatures in the high 20s.

When I arrived at the zoo, I was told that the penguin would be undergoing surgery in the Animal Hospital this morning. The Animal Hospital (called The Nest) is open viewing. The vets (microphones on) operate behind a large viewing window and describe what they’re doing and why. We watched as our little royal penguin friend was gently anaesthetised and and ten operated on. A large group of young school children sitting on the ground in front of the window watched in awe.

We all hope the wee fellow makes it; his chances aren’t that good.

Not far away, all the other animals either frolicked or lazed in the sun.

I hope you like this picture – there were two baby chimps in the enclosure, both being lovingly nurtured by their mothers. There were also some toddlers getting up to normal toddler mischief – they reminded me of my kids!