Monday, June 23, 2014

Ueno Zoo Part IV: Shinobazu Pond

As previously mentioned, a long bridge connects the East and West Gardens of the Ueno Zoo. There's an emu enclosure towards the east end of the bridge, but not much else in terms of exhibits.

One of the first things one sees upon reaching the West Gardens is Shinobazu Pond (or at least, the quarter of it that sits within the zoo's perimeters). The pond is home to big flocks of wild great cormorants.

Some captive waterbirds live in or near the pond as well, such as these white pelicans.

An African spoonbill.

Some Inca terns. Their aviary was significantly taller than those of the other waterbirds, giving these aerialists more room to fly around.

More Inca terns with a waldrapp ibis and a Canada goose.

A Madagascar ibis.

A short distance from shore was a small island on which Steller's sea eagles were kept. (Presumably they have been rendered flightless one way or another.)

Another corner of the pond had a Madagascar theme, including displays for radiated tortoises, hedgehog tenrecs, and hissing cockroaches. Here's one that I have actual pictures for, Madagascar's largest mammalian predator alive today, the fossa.

You can't have a Madagascar exhibit without lemurs, naturally. There were many species here: ring-tailed lemurs, ruffed lemurs, brown lemurs, gray gentle lemurs... but most exciting for me were the aye-ayes. Aye-ayes are incredibly unusual creatures and this was the first time I'd seen any in real life. There was at least one kept in a diurnal exhibit (predictably, it was sleeping), but a few others had nocturnal exhibits, in which they were very active. That activity, combined with the darkness, made them difficult to photograph. This is one of my more successful efforts (so you can imagine how the others turned out!).

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