Monday, 5 August 2013

A visit to Yorkshire Wildlife Park

This was our third visit to Yorkshire Wildlife park. Despite the cloudy, breezy weather, the place was packed. There were three main additions to the menagerie since our last visit: giraffes, Amur leopard and Baboons. As expected, the big cats and the painted dogs were mainly sleeping, offering little in terms of behaviour (other than the occasional, amazing roaring by the lions). The primates were on a different league, and they are really the main stars of the park in terms of entertaining. The squirrel monkeys were all mischief, stealing a babies' dummy and the contents of a packet of crisps during our visit. There is a notice warning about the monkeys penchance for dummies before their area. Dummies might be colourful and chewy, but the main attraction for the squirrel monkeys is that as their owners might want them back, the keepers have to entice the monkey to give the dummy back (in exchange for some delicacies), something that reinforces the stealing behaviour, is like the keepers were actually training the squirrel monkeys to search for and steal dummies. The squirrel monkeys are full of beans, and the young ones (and the people watching them) enjoyed games of chase and wrestling.
The ring-tailed lemurs were also very active and the young ones also did much leaping and chasing.
The baboons have only been in the park since Easter, all 18 of them including the 4 day old baby (top shot). The mum sat by the fantastic indoor watching area, nursing and cleaning the baby, and this was a top attraction not only for the public, but also for the other baboons. The mum was visited in turn by several young and old baboons intent on watching, touching or holding the baby. The mum was quite firm, but gentle keeping them away, with a gentle push of her hand, but after being groomed she often allowed the visitors to touch or briefly groom the baby.
Chapman Zebra grazing
Resting lioness
This male Pied Wagtail looked up to the ostrich, unfortunately, I could't fit both giant and dwarf in the same photo!
The bumpy head of a Giraffe
Sleepy Amur leopard
Slumbering tiger
A squirrel monkey standing bipedally, looking for scattered food
The lucky squirrel monkey holding the sought after dummy
More sleeping carnivores, Painted Dogs
and a napping red river hog
Ring-tailed lemurs

This young baboon was entertained by some finding while other jumped and played about
Playing young by the new mum
Baby attraction: everybody enjoys watching the new arrival
the mum left the baby a little distance away from her encouraging him to crawl. A few more shots of the mother and baby follow.

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