Since Carolyn is stuck in the states and as a result I am rather devoid of much in the way human contact (the Portuguese don’t count because so many of them are very short), I decided to go to the Lisbon Zoo and mingle with my fellow animals.
It’s a nice zoo- not overly large, but compares favorably to the zoo in Portland with about the same number of animals. They do have a dolphin show, which, combined with wandering around seeing all the other animals, made it a good three hour tour. A three hour tour. The weather started getting rough– oh wait, that’s a different show.
Without further ado here is the documented evidence of the visit (well, after this paragraph anyway… so there is just a bit more ado to do… and even a dodo). Thanks to baldsasquatch.com (which is this site in case you got here by accident), you can now visit The Lisbon Zoo virtually without forking over the 20.50 euro entrance fee. So send it to me. Okay I’ll discount it by half, you didn’t have to experience the smells.
20.50 euros seemed a little expensive, but some of that goes to helping animals in the wild where so many are threatened with extinction and many are going away forever. In fact, what we are seeing today is an extinction rate estimated by experts to be between 1,000 and 10,000 times higher than the natural extinction rate. So while zoos kinda suck for the animals that are in there, they do play a part in helping some of them not go the way of the dodo. I’m sad that we don’t get to see dodos anymore. It would help to see someone more stupid than– oh never mind. I won’t go there. You fill in your own damn blank.
The animals were kind enough to erect a Christmas tree for their captors in the courtyard.
These rhinos aren’t horny but they were sure hungry. They must have cut off the horns for safety. What? Excuse me? What did you think I meant?
African buffalo and American buffalo in adjoining pens. I wouldn’t bet a buffalo nickel against the American buffalo’s butt getting kicked by the African version in a fair fight. Those horns don’t play second fiddle to anyone.
I made sure the camel’s feet weren’t in the picture because, y’know, this is a family-friendly blog and all.
These cute little meerkats were interesting, in that the pen was simply a wall of glass just a few feet high. You’d think they’d jump out pretty easily. After all, it’s something any other mere cat could easily do.
Many of the animal pens had at least five or six of the same large animals in it. Which is nice. The fella on the left could just about reach me over the fence, but I’ve seen enough internet videos of the horrific slobbery mess a giraffe’s tongue can make to not stick out my neck for that risk.
Only in Portugal can you buy an apartment that overlooks the elephant pen. I wonder how they advertise it? “Included: free elephant viewing 24/7! And we promise, you’ll barely notice the smell after a while, or until your husband farts for the fifth time in an hour, whichever comes first!”
This guy is digging through the neighbors’ trash, hoping to find a discarded copy of Playelephant.
Speaking of elephants, did you know they were self aware? They conducted a study whereby they put a huge mirror in front of one. The animal proceeded to figure out that it was his (could be a hers, but we’ll just use ‘his’ to keep it simple), and began checking out parts of his body he couldn’t otherwise see! True story.
The lion exhibit was pretty decent. You can even go around to the top and look down on them from above. They were of course, as usual, just lyin’ around.
Orangutans are one of my favorite animals. They were pretty calm on this day though, except for one that was chasing around a monkey that liked to taunt him and scamper away before he got caught. Apparently monkeys drive apes ape.
The cheetah pen was fairly impressive in that they were all walking around (there was at least 6 or 7 of them) and then they’d pass right by the glass enclosure and sometimes just stand there for a second or two and stare. The newbies do that because they think they’re ordering off the menu.
Just don’t ever play poker with them, because, y’know, they’re all cheetahs.
The chimps were hugging it out… you would too if you were trapped in a cage the rest of your life.
But their play area was pretty large… plenty of room for them to monkey around. Oops, I mean ape around.
They say the great apes, like the chimps, are our closest animal relatives. About 98% of the DNA in your genes is exactly the same as in chimpanzees, making you as closely related to a chimp as horses are to zebras. That said, I’m guessing the 2% of the DNA that went missing is somehow related to picking your butt and eating your poop, as this guy is doing.
Speaking of which, did you ever notice that humans may be the only animal with a butt whereby the actual anus is sandwiched between the biggest hunks of fat the body has? It’s as if evolution (or the creator, whichever your pleasure) said, “Hey, you may be related to the chimps- but we’re going to stop that butt-picking nonsense right here and now!” Thank God for that. I hate the taste of poop.
This is obviously a female monkey because of course, she has a mop attached.
The ocelot was nowhere to be seen. I think it’s false advertising. They should be called ocenones if they’re not going to show up.
It’s around Christmastime, so of course we have to have reindeer. Never mind that this isn’t really a reindeer. It’s a deer and it almost rained, so I guess it’s an almost rained deer. This drunken Santa doesn’t care anyway; he’s obviously still recovering from his busy workday a week ago.
Okay stop it. It took me more than a few minutes to photoshop that guy behind a chain link fence, which took away from my time to make a better joke. Wait ’til next year!
Oh my Sweet Baboo– how I love you so! What? Your butt is swollen just for me? I’m so flattered!
This is an impressive enclosure for the deer… what? Deer? You build a monument befitting the king of beasts, or at the least the orangutans, and you put plain ol’ deer in there? Management! Get me a dinosaur or something!
They named this the brown bear. I’m not sure why.
It looks like he’s saying, “Yeah, I just killed ‘im, so whataya gonna do about it?”
This Grey Bird (hey, if the animal above is named a Brown Bear, I assume this is named a Grey Bird) almost coulda pecked my eye out through the fence. Fortunately, it was too big a-strich.
Dammit, I’m sorry. I’m working on the material guys. I can’t hit a homer every time. Let me have a foul ball once in a while, okay? What? All of them are foul balls? Yeah, yeah, just look at the pictures and pipe down.
These guys put on a nice show feeding the pelicans. They got right up to the fence. Of course, they were speaking Portuguese the whole time (the trainers, not the pelicans), but I laughed when everyone else did just so I could fit in.
“Hey, we break out at midnight.” “Okay.” “Hey, we break out at midnight.” “You already said that.” “Of course I did, I’m a parrot, stupid.” “Oh.” “Yeah and by the way… hey, we break out at midnight.”
Tigers are some of the coolest cats around. They sleep 16-20 hours a day. It’s almost like they’re retired like me! Sadly, there’s only about 4,000 tigers left in the wild. 4,000! I killed more flies than that in my backyard last summer! What a loss to the world it would be to have this magnificent animal become extinct.
While not overly large, the Lisbon Zoo has some nice wide boulevards. Which is good because they have a McDonalds on site as well.
Speaking of dying (because of, you know, eating at McDonalds), the zoo had a touching feature whereby they have a large graveyard dedicated to just the animals. Not sure if there are any elephants in there or not.
Certainly one of the highlights of the zoo is the dolphin exhibition. I decided to sit and watch despite the growing worldwide awareness that in order to teach them to act like trained seals, they need to virtually torture and starve them until they become dependent on their human handlers. There may not be many of these shows left after a while. Despite all that, the dolphins seemed happy, I mean, they were smiling the whole time, even after the show was over.
They also had trained seals that acted like dolphins. I was very confused. I think they did that on porpoise.
This guy is moving through the water at two dolphinpower. Which begs the question, shouldn’t boat engines be rated by dolphinpower and not horsepower? I mean, horses can swim and everything, but I’d take a ten dolphinpower engine over a ten horsepower engine any day.
After the show I decided to approach the personnel in charge and demand that I get to interact with the dolphins personally or I was going to blow this dolphin training debacle thing wide open. They said something in Portuguese that sounded like swearing, and then told me in English to get lost. So I told them I was just a stupid American (“sou Americano estupido”) and I was all alone in Portugal, even on Christmas (all alone-o em PortaGAL onno Christmasso”). That didn’t impress them either. So I gave them 100 euros and they gave me a life vest and told me to go ahead on in.
Just kiddin’, these pictures are from 2006 in Mexico. You can tell because I still have a teensy bit of hair on top, plus I’m obviously recovering from a margarita hangover.
All in all, The Lisbon Zoo is a nice zoo. I’d give it eight animal poops out of ten.
Now I can go to bed early on New Year’s Eve because I already partied like an animal.