Alright I definitely have to get more organised about posting my photographs after a session/trip… Because here we go again. Posting from the back log – This time from my visit to the Cotswolds Wildlife Park and Gardens (again sometime in 2016 while I was living in England). Hopefully from now on I learn my lesson and post more regularly. As a bonus though, this post is particularly Otter-heavy… So gets ready for the awwwws : D
This Burrowing Owl does not look happy to be caged up!
If you don’t see a Ring-Tailed Lemur performing Hamlet, you’re mad!
This Prevost’s Squirrel is terrifying!
A Cotton Top Tamarin having a cheeky scratch
I’m just a sucker for a cute group of Meerkats
I wonder if my painter can reproduce the funky markings of this Tokay Gecko
Does this Frilled Lizard remind anyone of an iconic movie scene?
A wise old looking Six Banded Armadillo
A vibrant and (I’m sure misunderstood) Tarantula
What is this Oriental Small Clawed Otter shielding its friend from?
Hey I have a rock! High Five!
Compared to the other Wildlife Parks and Zoos I had occasion to visit the Cotswolds was definitely one of the better ones. Being somewhat out in the country meant that it had large spaces and bigger enclosures for most of the animals, and a really large selection too. Though if you’re a “completionist” like me be sure to pack a lunch and some comfortable walking shoes, because it will take you all day to check out the park… and there are many animals you’ll want to visit repeatedly depending on the time of day.
A pair of Oriental Small Clawed Otters… kissing?
An African Crested Porcupine, just out for a stroll in its enclosure
A gorgeous and poisonous two-coloured Dart Frog
The Great Indian Hornbill
A shy, aloof Pallas Cat
An Oriental Small Clawed Otter rolling around in the sun
A pair of Giraffes having a tussle
A beautiful Blue and Gold macaw
A beautiful Peacock with its vibrant plumage
A rather angry and determined looking Male Galapagos Giant Tortoise
Pardon the date in the post. As it should make evident, I took these pictures a while back on a visit to Chester Zoo in England. The trip was a fun from what I recollect. Unfortunately it was also cold and shaky hands make for bad photography. So while it was somewhat memorable, it wasn’t all that successful.
A rather grumpy looking Baboon, with his beautifully marked blue snout
Looks like Human aren’t the only ones with dirty habits, as this Great Sumatran Orangutan shows!
A magnificent (and huge) Great Hornbill, shot through its mesh enclosure
A rather sad-eyed Emperor Tamarin
A Sumatran Cub enjoying his lunch
A straw chewing Radiated Tortoise, out on a stroll
An interestingly spotted Salvador’s Monitor lizard
A hungry Andean aka Spectacled Bear noshing down on some yummy cucumbers
A large Bornean Orangutan just swinging about
Still I’ve picked out a few worth publishing from the batch. Certainly a few gems in there I’m happy to add to the collection. Hopefully next time, if there ever is one, I’ll do the Zoo and its “Islands” justice.
A beautifully camouflaged green Dart Frog
A pair of Radiated Tortoises
A gorgeous Blue Morpho Butterfly perched on a branch overhead
A vividly coloured Caiman Lizard
A pair of vibrant blue Dart Frogs
A young Great Sumatran Orangutan
I wish I had more to say on the visit. But time and other factors nudge me away from reminiscing. So hopefully these few shots speak for themselves.
WARNING: This post contains adult themes and explicit language
Now, let me start by stating the obvious, I don’t want anyone to get Cancer! But it certainly got your attention didn’t it? It also maybe gave you an indication of how “inappropriate” some of the content in this post may be. So if jokes about Cancer or AIDS or Pedophilia aren’t your bag, do us both a favour… Don’t read on… Because this review-of-sorts of Frankie Boyle’s ‘Hurt Like You’ve Never Been Loved‘ tour may not be for you…
Frankie Boyle, even at his most polite, isn’t a “family friendly” comic. This is a man who was banned by the BBC because he once said on stage “I thought the only way they’d let me back on the BBC was if I shagged a child” But despite not being as mass-marketable like others in his line of work, such as Michael McIntyre or John Bishop, Boyle is still very popular – A fact that was made very evident by the fact that despite being extremely politically incorrect, he sold out his show in Oxford. Even if it meant fans driving down from London or Redding or god knows where else, as many had seemed to have done.
Right, well, another Zoo post… I’m really making a habit of these aren’t I? Well… No regrets!!! : D
Here are some of my favourite shots from a visit to Marwell Zoo, in the English county of Hampshire. Tickets were quite affordable, compared to say ZSL, but then it was quite a drive away to get to. It wasn’t the sunny day one hopes for on a visit to the Zoo, but then it is England ; p
An Ocelot has a nice mid-day nap
A Stern Looking Secretary Bird
A lonely little Dyeing Poison Frog
A Beautiful Amur Tiger
An Amur Leopard blending seamlessly into the “jungle floor”
A speedy little Egyptian Tortoise
A shy White Rhino
An inquisitive looking Red Ruffed Lemur
A Family of Desert Mongoose
A sleeping Madagascar Tree Boa
A sleeping Madagascar Tree Boa
Quite honestly, Marwell was amazing. The animals had great enclosures and I’m sure during the summer it must be quite a sight to see many of them roaming in shared habitats. If you love near by or are planning a trip in that direction, take a day and go. You won’t regret it.
If you’re a long-time reader of this blog you’ll know that I like, once in a while, to try my hand at photography. Now, I am by no means a professional. Barely even an amateur. But I do manage to get the odd picture or two that I can look at years on and feel quite pleased with.
One of my favourite things in the world to photograph is animals, and while I’d much rather photograph them in the wild, being a city a boy I rarely get the opportunity. So it is a delightful treat when I convince a friend to accompany me to the local Zoo.
Lynx on a Log
A playful Wolverine tosses about in his enclosure
A Red Panda munching on some bamboo
A female Sea Lion leaps though the air
A sleepy Lion wakes from his 21 hour nap…
A European Brown Bear out on a walk
An African White Rhino grazes nearby
An inquisitive looking Meerkat
A lone European Wolf snoozes in the sun
Knowing of my love for the furry, slimy, scary and cuddly, a very dear friend decided to take me to Whipsnade Zoo, located in Bedfordshire. And I must say, if you haven’t been, you really should try to get out there. It is just breathtakingly gorgeous and seeing so many of the animals roaming in their large enclosures really warmed my heart. Many of the smaller herbivores were even roaming free about the whole compound, which was an especial treat! It may not be the great plains and jungles many of them are accustomed to, but it’s nice to see them being treated well. Or as well as can be hoped.
A rather stern looking Pink Flamingo.
A Sea Lion breaks through the surface of his cool blue pool
An African White Rhino striking an epic pose on the horizon!
A Ring Tailed Lemur out at play.
A Cheeky Ring-Tailed Lemur
A Wallaby stares me down…
A Red Panda snoozes in the tree home
A Ring-Tailed Lemur mid-jump
I hope some of these pictures inspire you to patronise this establishment for yourself. And take it from me, if you’re a real animal buff, get the ZSL Membership – 3 trips to either Whipsnade or the London Zoo and it’ll have paid for itself.
Despite spending a wonderful year in Oxford I had not, much to my chagrin, visited the two linked museums in oxford – the Natural History Museum and the Pitt Rivers. So a few days past, thanks to the prodding of a very dear friend, I finally made the excursion to see the muss and fuss (and of course the Shrunken Heads!)
Right, now where is Alice?
Hello Mr. Badger!
The humongous jaw of a Sperm Whale
I rather realistic looking stuffed Deer
The famous Oxford Dodo
What followed was a realisation that these two museums are severely lacking in space. Oh don’t get me wrong, I don’t mean to imply that they were by any means shoddy or architecturally minuscule… Rather I make such a comment simply to make more dramatic the point (as is my habit ; p) that the institutions are absolutely bursting with an amazingly diverse collection of artefacts, fossils and various bits and bobs. While I have had the pleasure of visiting many museums, none made so vigorous an effort to catalogue the minutia of human existence as did the Pitt Rivers. And the Museum of Natural History can boast many wonders of its own… From masks to games to arms to cosmetics – the various displays house thousands of little pieces of the human story.
Some exquisitely carved bone and wood horns
A fabulously colourful Tribal Headdress
An intimidating Sabre-tooth Cat skull
But it’s not all tiny puzzle pieces of the grander human experiment (apologies for the mixed metaphor). There is also much for the less anthropologically inclined, such as dinosaur fossils, various extinct species of animals and a fairly decent collection of stuffed animals. Admittedly I did not spend much time in Natural History Museum, owing most to the fact that I found it difficult to stare at the stuffed remains of so many beautiful creatures, which I would have given much to see in the wild. Sadly for many of us, and especially generations to come, stuffed and mounted is probably the only way many of them will ever be seen.
My personal thoughts on conservation and preservation aside, the Pitt Rivers is a wonderful family friendly afternoon that I encourage all of you in or about Oxford to drop in on. Admission is free and you can even enjoy a nice picnic in the garden out front.