Sunday, September 05, 2010

09/05 - Touching and petting wild animals....

Another sunny Sunday with pleasant temperatures around 20 °C / 68 F, so we took the chance to make the planned venture which has been cancelled a few weekends ago due to the rainy weather: we went to the adventure zoo in Eichberg (

This zoo is very special... not very big - only a few animals - but the visitors have the possibility to get in contact with some of the animals.

At first we saw a pair of snow leopards, an endangered species... both are 17 and 18 yo, which is more or less the expected age for those.... both walking around very leisurely, enjoying the fresh turkey which they got for food.... fascinating to see their big paws which act like snow shoes in the region where they originally come from. The can jump from the standing position up to 16 m / 17.5 yards which shows their immense strength... one of the reasons why you cannot touch them.... if they give you a friendly hug, they'll seriously hurt you.

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Those monkeys are less dangerous, so there was no problem to feed them, but it's also not recommended to pet them... they'll bite... and bites of monkeys can be dangerous for human beings and have to be treated by a doctor.

Big Emu Caruso - top speed app. 50 km/h / 31 mph: suprisingly he can run with this speed up to 2 hours!! That´s really imrpressing. Tanja fed him, nobody else dared to so... later on we could pet his feathers. Caruso has a very good relation to the zoo keeper, he fonlded her like crazy while the people touched him.

The lil fish otter made a good show.... the knowledge that they'll get some deer meat makes them do funny things.... and they didn't feel bad for the mess they made in their bassin which´s cleaned before we moved on the next animal.... the red panda.

He lost his mother a few days after he was born due to this the girl to be seen in the picture, rose him up. He needed to get his milk every two hours... all around the clock.... that's a hard challenge... but you can see that he LOVES his "mother"... playing all the time... having fun... it's really nice to see....

They also have some Alpakas there... related to the Lamas which live in the Andes in South America... which have the ability to spit... and hitting their aim to a distance of 3 m / 120 inch. So... better not to provoke them...

At the end of the tour we reached Tanja´s and my personal highlight: the hunting leopard. I like all kinda cats... the small ones we have at home but also the bigger ones that we saw there.

Jade, the one which you can see right here is used to the contact to humans... but before they came outta the cage with it, we got some instructions to take care of.

After that we got the chance to touch and pet it... it's purring like crazy... as a cat but much louder.... I never had the chance to touch an animal like this and it´s definetly a very nice experience.

The whole visit was very interesting, I'm sure we´ll go there again... that´s one of those things which are worth to be supported.

EDIT, 11/11/2010: We feel sad about the news we heard this morning on our local radio station: they have to close the Zoo Eichberg do to the fact that there is no money to run it anymore.