Saturday, March 28, 2009

Roo Heaven...

A couple of the 'girls'. Kangaroos are not overly affectionate, but they do tolerate little kids pulling at their ears and will eat from your hand.

I spent the day in Roo Heaven today; with the grey kangaroos. I'm not sure how many there are in the enclosure because they don't sit still long enough to count them. They are all girls. The males are kept 'off-exhibit,' in a different part of the park. It's one way to control the population. In fact, many of the animals on display... mammals, that is, are females for the same reason. They do have a breeding program at the zoo. They have to keep track of 'family' lines to be sure they get the right genetic mix when they do breed.

A couple of times a day, a guest will ask, "How can you tell, which roo's who?" Well, I only know one by sight... that's Floppsie, but that's because she's carrying around a baby roo in her pouch. The baby's name is Fraggles. The zookeepers know half of them by sight. For the rest, they paint one of the big toe nails (of the back legs) with a different color nail polish – using 'rad' colors: neon blues, bright yellows, glitter purples and teals, etc. – that seems to work well; plus it keeps the guests wondering?!?

Tomorrow is my last volunteer day at the zoo. :-( I'll be working with the 'big cat' team - tigers and cheetahs. (No lions yet, but they're coming soon.) I won't be able to work directly with the animals, but I'll be working behind the scenes which I'm excited about!

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