Friday, August 21, 2009

Zoo - Textures

Yesterday was free admission day at Reid Park Zoo in honor of Tucson's 234Th birthday. I was fascinated by the various textures, beginning with the lush velvety grass lawn, a treat for desert dwellers.

In the aviary, this friendly pair of Bleeding Heart Doves was building a nest three feet off the ground right next to the busy walkway. From the back, they look like common pigeons, but their fine chest feathers sport the shocking red spot that gives them their name.
Inside the cool air conditioned Lee H. Brown Conservation Learning Center, several docents were encouraging visitors to feel the spiny skin of the reptiles.

Folks of all ages enjoyed learning about these cold-blooded scaled wonders of nature.

Back outdoors, I noticed the warty, spiky surfaces of plants like the pachypodium.

I was surprised to find out that this deeply wrinkled pachyderm is younger than I am.

The fancy head feathers of these constantly moving Victoria Crowned Pigeons looked like frizzy blue clouds. I was reminded of Patty and Selma Bouvier, Marge's blue-haired twin sisters on The Simpson's cartoon.

For $2, one can feed a giraffe a biscuit or lettuce leaf and marvel at the animal's 18" long, black rough-textured tongue.

All giraffes have unique coat patterns. Like human fingerprints, no two giraffes are alike. This mosaic-like pattern sort of resembled the chain link fence.

Perhaps you're tempted now, to reach out and explore textures in your neck of the woods.


Anonymous said...

Wow, Diane, there are so many textures to feel and in my case, see, through your beautiful pictures, and wonderful post! You've enticed me to look for texture today.

betchai said...

wonderful textures Diane, the wrinkled pachyderm also surprised me too, how wonderful it s for you to be that close and get to see and feel their textures.

James said...

Wonderful post. I had no idea that Tucson has been around so long. I drove though a few years ago and I wish I could have spent some time there.
Have a nice weekend!

penny said...

I've never seen a bleeding heart dove before, he's beautiful :)
The whole animal kingdom is wonderful, isn't it!
Marvelous photos, Diane...
Thanks for stopping by, have a nice day

Ashley said...

What a wonderful zoo, and so many different animals! I will have to visit the next time I am there. Beautiful images!

Bhavesh Chhatbar said...

I am, inspired by this :)


Prospero said...

Diana, I looked at the enlarged pachypodium shot. Great texture there.

Is it Pachypodium rutenbergianum?

Diane AZ said...

Hi Prospero, I think it is Pachypodium rutenbergianum, but I'm not sure, I don't see them too often. I wish I had taken a picture of its leaves.