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 Post subject: Recent Trips to Riverbanks Zoo and Zoo Atlanta
PostPosted: May 25th, 2012, 8:54 am 
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Joined: June 8th, 2010, 3:02 am
Posts: 598
Several weeks ago, I was able to visit both Riverbanks Zoo and Gardens (Columbia SC) and Zoo Atlanta (Atlanta GA). Both of these facilities have impressive collections, and each zoo has its strengths. Not much narration in this post, but a variety of pictures. And I apologize in advance, there are several photos in the Riverbanks series which are oriented sideways. I cannot figure out how to right them- that is how Photobucket downloads them apparently.
Up first is Riverbanks:
Ring Tailed Lemur
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King Vulture
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This was a neat exhibit- the meerkats were housed in front of the elephants, so you could see both of them together in the same view.
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Galapagos tortoise yard
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Check out the rattle on this dude!
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I really liked how the Aquarium and Reptile Complex (ARC, their ‘reptile house’) incorporated an impressive amount of natural light through skylights over almost each exhibit.
A view of the Southeastern section of the ARC
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And a view of some of the Desert exhibits
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Cayman Island Blue Iguanas
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They had a group of Tomistomas, or False Gharials
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And Boelen’s pythons. Their iridescence is just flabbergasting.
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There were three Gaboon vipers in this enclosure, along with a pair of green mambas.
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I love radiated tortoises, and was thrilled to count over a dozen large adults in this paddock
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Asian Black Mountain Tortoise, Manouria emys phayrei
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The “Birdhouse” had these amazing exhibits, along with tanks that stretched along entire walls exhibiting several penguin species. As you can probably imagine, there was a very potent smell in there…
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Wreathed Hornbills
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At Zoo Atlanta:

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Black Rhino
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I was super excited to see this Bongo. I have never seen the Bongo at Zoo Atlanta before, and this time around we saw that there are three: male, female and juvenile.
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More Manouria
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Manouria emys have a unique nest building method, and this female was performing it. They lay their eggs in a mound of vegetation and leaves that they scrape together. The finished product looks much like a gator nest.
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I really liked how they have the green tree pythons and the emerald tree boas displayed next to each other. They have been this way for years, but this is the first time I really thought about the intent behind this setup.
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You may remember my request about a month ago for images of cribo habitat. This is what I have been envisioning exactly, and I will be working on the finished product over the next couple of months. This particular exhibit housed Neotropical rattlesnakes beautifully.
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King cobra exhibit
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Nekkid mole rats
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Sun bear
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There are two tiger cubs that were born last year and are now fairly sizeable. Their mom was relaxing back in a corner in the shade, but these two were quite photogenic and very active.
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One of them spotted a grackle in their yard and stalked it, and pounced halfheartedly. The bird flew off, but it was still cool to see them practicing some of their hunting behaviors.
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Cassowary
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Aldabra tortoise yard
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Thanks for looking. I hope you enjoyed the vicarious trip.
--Berkeley


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 Post subject: Re: Recent Trips to Riverbanks Zoo and Zoo Atlanta
PostPosted: May 25th, 2012, 12:21 pm 
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Joined: October 9th, 2010, 11:00 am
Posts: 230
Location: Rochester, NY
Thanks Berkeley. That Bongo is awesome...very handsome animal. Lot of nice shots. Seems like a lot of thought was given to some of those herp exhibits...like the King Cobra enclosure.


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 Post subject: Re: Recent Trips to Riverbanks Zoo and Zoo Atlanta
PostPosted: May 25th, 2012, 12:26 pm 

Joined: June 7th, 2010, 1:23 pm
Posts: 4
Location: Upstate S.C.
Very nice post Berkeley!! What kind of camera do you use?


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 Post subject: Re: Recent Trips to Riverbanks Zoo and Zoo Atlanta
PostPosted: May 25th, 2012, 2:42 pm 
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Joined: June 7th, 2010, 8:36 am
Posts: 374
Location: Sunny Myrtle Beach
Very nice stuff. Scott's cane has an impressive string, and very little taper if any to it................I wonder how long he's had it. I need to ride up to Columbia one day......it's been years!


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 Post subject: Re: Recent Trips to Riverbanks Zoo and Zoo Atlanta
PostPosted: May 25th, 2012, 6:49 pm 
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Joined: June 8th, 2010, 7:08 pm
Posts: 389
Cool to see my baby lewisi all grown up!


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 Post subject: Re: Recent Trips to Riverbanks Zoo and Zoo Atlanta
PostPosted: May 25th, 2012, 7:05 pm 
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Joined: June 8th, 2010, 2:19 am
Posts: 2886
Location: Kuching, Sarawak (Borneo)
Very beautiful enclosures. The King Cobra exhibit is quite ingenious...never seen anything like it!

What's that red snake?


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 Post subject: Re: Recent Trips to Riverbanks Zoo and Zoo Atlanta
PostPosted: May 26th, 2012, 1:48 pm 
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Joined: April 30th, 2012, 2:11 pm
Posts: 74
Location: Lee County, Florida
These were great pictures, I really loved the Lion picture just chilling on the side wall, I would have to say that the bamboo field inside the King Cobra enclosure is just genius.


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 Post subject: Re: Recent Trips to Riverbanks Zoo and Zoo Atlanta
PostPosted: May 26th, 2012, 3:51 pm 
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Joined: June 8th, 2010, 3:02 am
Posts: 598
Thanks everyone. Yes, a lot of the enclosures at both facilities really have some good ideas put into place.

The king cobra enclosure at Zoo Atlanta was spectacular. Back when I was growing up, the bamboo forest idea had originally been done for the Tokay geckos, and I always thought that it was incredibly well done then. Riverbanks actually had a similar set-up for its adult king cobra, but it was taller and much more open.

Dave- You are quite welcome. Thanks for the kind words. Agreed! That bongo was awesome- I had only seen them in pictures previously and it was even better live!

Trey-Much appreciated, man. I work with a Sony Cyber Shot; a little point and shoot that I am quite happy with.

Thanks Don. I'm not sure about how long Scott has had those guys (there are five in the exhibit -that I counted). I am fairly certain that that particular snake has been on display at least 12 years. I remember seeing it when I would go up there for herp shows while I was still in college. You should definitely go up there. I think you will be quite pleased.

Jeff- I wondered if you were attached to the lewisi in some form. How old are they?

Hans- the snake you asked about is a red spitting cobra, and a stunning one at that.

Denmeade- Thank you sir. That lion is every bit of the royalty he exudes. Without question, he OWNS the enclosure and the females that live with him.

Thanks guys!
--Berkeley


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