A visit to the Bronx Zoo – Another Sea Lion

I didn’t include this picture along with the others in the previous post (A visit to the Bronx Zoo – Feeding Time for the Sea Lions) because this one wasn’t actually fed.

The entire time we watched he just lay on a rock, eyes closed, basking in the sun. As mentioned in the earlier post the large male was extremely noisy. This didn’t seem to bother this small one in the least.

In fact we were getting a bit worried by his apparent lethargy when we heard from the speaker that he was in fact quite young – born only about a year ago. Apparently young sea lions don’t eat fish until they reach a certain age. Still we were a bit worried by his lack of movement. Then right after the feeding ended he lifted his head, yawned and then dove into the water. It seems that all was well after all.

Taken with a Sony Alpha 500 and Minolta 100-200mm f4.5 AF.

A visit to the Bronx Zoo – Feeding Time for the Sea Lions

This was without a doubt the highlight of the visit to the zoo. The sea lions put of a magnificent displays of high speed swimming, diving, and prodigious leaps from the water to the rocks. As feeding time approached they became more and more excited.

The large one was was extremely noisy and spent the entire time that we were there (probably about 45 minutes) “honking” away.

Taken with a Sony Alpha 500 and Minolta 100-200mm f4.5 AF.

A visit to the Bronx Zoo – A Southern White Rhinoceros

So far in this series it’s been deer, ducks, swans etc. – nothing particularly exotic. Finally we came across something rather special: Southern White Rhinoceroses.

According to the World Wildlife Fund:

White rhinos are the second largest land mammal and their name comes from the Afrikaan’s, a West Germanic language, word “weit” which means wide and refers to the animal’s mouth. Also known as the square-lipped rhinoceros, white rhinos have a square upper lip with almost no hair. Two genetically different subspecies exist, the nothnern and southern white rhino and are found in two different regions in Africa. As of March 2018, there are only two rhinos of the northern white rhino left, both of which are female. They live in the Ol Pejeta Conservancy in Kenya and are protected round-the-clock by armed guards. Their near extinction is due to decades of rampant poaching for rhino horn.

The majority (98.8%) of the southern white rhinos occur in just four countries: South Africa, Namibia, Zimbabwe, and Kenya. Southern white rhinos were thought to be extinct in the late 19th century, but in 1895 a small population of less than 100 individuals was discovered in Kwazulu-Natal, South Africa. After more than a century of protection and management, they are now classified as Near Threatened and 19,600 – 21,000 animals exist in protected areas and private game reserves. They are the only of the five rhino species that are not endangered.

White rhinos have complex social structures. Groups of sometimes 14 rhinos may form, notably females with calves. Adult males defend territories of roughly one square mile, which they mark with vigorously scraped dung piles. The home range for adult females can be more than seven times larger, depending on habitat quality and population density. Breeding females are prevented from leaving a dominant male’s territory, which is marked and patrolled by its owner on a regular basis. Males competing for a female may engage in serious conflict, using their horns and massive size to inflict wounds.

There were actually two of them in the enclosure, but I liked the way this one was looking directly at me. I was also feeling glad there were barriers between it and me.

Taken with a Sony Alpha 500 and Minolta 100-200mm f4.5 AF.

A visit to the Bronx Zoo – A duck

At first I thought this was a mallard, but on further consideration I’m not at all sure that it is. I seems smaller and with a a more “pointy” bill than the mallards I’m familiar with. The coloration also seems different.

After browsing through a lot of images I’m unable to discover what it is at this point. I’ll keep trying.

Don’t you think it looks a little annoyed?

Taken with a Sony Alpha 500 and Minolta 100-200mm f4.5 AF.

A visit to the Bronx Zoo – A pair of swans

These two swans formed part of the Northern Ponds exhibit. I believe they are Trumpeter Swans.

I’ve always loved swans. They’re so elegant. They’re also quite large and rather mean. I once saw a swan clear a pond of a bunch of Canada Geese that had dared to land in its territory. I always thought of Canada Geese as large birds until I saw one next to an angry swan.

I also once had the misfortune to be in a canoe that capsized, dumping me (and the other occupants of the canoe) into the water right next a nesting swan. I wasn’t afraid of the water, but the angry swan was extremely scary.

However, I still love swans – at a distance.

Taken with a Sony Alpha 500 and Minolta 100-200mm f.5 AF.