For those of you who don’t know, I love the Zoo! I turn into a kid all over again, walking through the exhibits with my eyes wide open with delight.
And even though I understand Zoo’s are kind of an evil place with animal containment, that’s something I can push to the back of my head when it comes to seeing my favorite animals. So of course one of the first places I wanted to visit upon arriving to Atlanta was the zoo. In Detroit where I’m from, many of the animal exhibits have been removed so it means driving to Ohio for some elephants, and even further for my favorite, PANDAS! So seeing that this Atlanta Zoo has both of these and more, I had to make a trip as soon as I possibly could.
Tara the elephant
Meet Tara. ..I believe that’s her name, I’ll crosscheck to be sure. But this beautiful African elephant loves attention and showing off her skills. Well trained and manner, this 8,800 pound mammal stole a piece of my heart.
According to the expert elephant zookeeper, the elephants red coat comes from the Atlanta soil. She said usually the mammals are grey but because of the southern clay, their color changes to suit the environment.
Typically an elephant like Tara could live up to 60 years. And while elephants aren’t exactly going extinct, they are being hunted by humans day-by-day for their ivory tusk which literally breaks my heart. Save our elephants people! But in the meantime, I’ll have little Tara as a animal friend I see a few times a year. Ha!
Ok these fellas were pretty interesting. Actually they weren’t doing anything but just hanging out is what made them something to watch. It looked like your slouch of a roommate barley awake on your couch. I’ve never seen or heard of these animals but they remind me of sloths, but only bigger.
PANDA PANDA PANDA
OK. Not to save the best of what I got for last, but jk that’s exactly what I’m doing! I LOVEE PANDAS! The reason why I was so anxious to get to the zoo in the first place was because I’ve watch the two panda twins grow up from afar and it was about time I met them! (Check the link here for their first 100 days of life)
Now it’s your turn to meet the twins. Or as I’ll call them, My Broads.
So the Atlanta panda exhibit consists of two different areas. One area is where Mama Lun Lun and Yang Yang lives and in the other space is where you’ll find the twins; Mei Lun and Mei Huan.
Mei Lun and Mei Huan are the first and only giant panda twins to ever survive and live in the United States. Now, the cute and very cuddling looking Asian bears are almost three years old and have become a major attraction, and my favorite at the Atlanta Zoo. Their home is much larger than their parents. They have space to roam and play and stretch their little panda-child-legs. The cubs are active. Spending their entire life in the Atlanta Zoo, it’s easy to see them grow and transform into the giant panda they’ll eventually become.
You can watch the parents from inside through the glass. Although the glass separates us, I’m standing like 5 feet or less to my most favoritest animal in the entire world! This is where I can get close. They seem friendly although sometimes all they want to do is sit in the corner eating bamboo while you’re trying to get their attention. And they poop up to 100 times a day! Weird.
I didn’t see any poop anywhere though. But they just kind of hung out doing their own thing. I couldn’t image spending my life in a see-through box so I guess I don’t know what they’re thinking. But they’re calm. They kind of wattle around, climbing the trees and take naps. Yang Yang seemed like he was tired. He eventually laid down right in front of me for a quick snooze. So if a panda wants to take a nap, you take one with em!
The cage consist of a few sling style chairs, a few logs and a ton of bamboo. It doesn’t sound like their living situation is the best environment but bears seemed to be at peace with their home.