This weekend I spent some time at the Brookfield Zoo. I haven’t been to a zoo in years, too many childhood memories of caged animals making me extremely distressed. I finally broke down and went because the zoo has an exhibit in the summer of live butterflies. As butterflies naturally live for 1 day to a few weeks, the exhibit is there for just a short time.
(click on the photos for a larger view)
Here are some highlights of a few of the butterflies, an Alaskan brown bear, two polar bears and an African elephant. The exhibits are certainly larger than the cell blocks of my youth and more the habitat appropriate for the animals.
There is only one elephant which is not optimal. Elephants are social creatures and do not do well on their own. This elephant’s friend passed away rather recently and Brookfield Zoo is working diligently to find another. I hope they find one soon because you can almost feel this elephants loneliness.
I intend to make more trips to the zoo. I prefer to see animals be in their natural habitats, with limitless space, but as man encroaches on their territory (often purposely harming them and bringing many close to extinction) it seems zoos are becoming one of the few safe homes for them.
Let’s hope we can find a way live harmoniously with the wild. What's unique about Brookfield Zoo is throughout paths there is signage helping us understand what each of us can do to make a difference to help save each of the animals habitats. Makes us realize we are not helpless to evoke change in the world.
Be sure to visit Brookfield Zoo the next time you are in the area, I think you'll enjoy it. I certainly did!