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Archive for the 'Camera Critters' Category

A Dose of Cute Animals

Since I’m deep in edit territory I thought I’d give you cute today with some of the animal photos I’ve taken over the years.

Frog

“Hey, what are you staring at?”

Pony at Farmers' Market

“Aw, why can’t I have a more modern style?”

Alpaca

“Who are you calling baldy? Have you looked in the mirror lately?”

Highland Cow

“My hairdresser said this is the latest style at the farm.”

Okay – put your captioning skills to work. Give me your captions for these photos.

The Cuteness of Pandas

Panda are native to China, and during our recent visit to Chengdu, we were lucky enough to visit the Panda Research Center.

I was very impressed with the Research Center. The grounds are landscaped with bamboo and other native plants, making the entire place seem like a wilderness area.

Once they reach adulthood, pandas are solitary creatures. The only time pandas come together is to mate, and the window of opportunity is a very small one. Along with the diminishing habitat, this is one of the reasons pandas are in danger of extinction.

Adult Panda

An adult panda

The Research Center is having great success with breeding, although it hasn’t been easy. They found that the pandas raised at the center didn’t know how to mate. They solved this problem by showing the pandas blue movies—a movie of pandas mating in the wild. This ingenious solution has produced a bumper “crop” of babies this year, and we saw many of them in the nursery.

Young Pandas in Nursery

Babies in the Nursery

Keepers feed the pandas early in the morning before temperatures rise. Their natural habitat is at a high altitude, and they dislike the muggy temperatures in Chengdu. We arrived at the center around nine, just after feeding time. During the late morning the pandas return to their quarters, which are air conditioned, and spend the hottest part of the day sleeping.

Juvenile Pandas

Teddy Bear’s Picnic

Adult Panda

We saw adults, groups of juveniles and the nursery where there were babies of various ages. We also saw red pandas, which are not as rare but share the same habitat as pandas. They’re smaller and are able to climb higher where they eat different parts of the bamboo to the giant panda.

One of the highlights of my visit was a close encounter with a young panda. I had to pay extra, but it was worth every penny. The money goes to the Research Center and helps further research and pay for the upkeep of the pandas.

Shelley and Panda

I had to “gown up” with plastic booties, gloves and a coverall to help keep contamination at bay. The keeper plonked the panda on my knee. He wasn’t very heavy and he had very soft fur. He sat calmly, chewing on bamboo while helpers took many photos for me. I know my grin was wide. I love animals, and it was a real privilege to hold a panda.

This was the first time I’ve ever seen pandas. They certainly have the cuteness factor going for them. My visit was a dream come true and was right up there with seeing gorillas in their natural habitat. One for my life top ten experiences.

A Whale of a Tail

Camera Critters

My husband took this photo of a sperm whale at Kaikoura in the South Island of New Zealand. Kaikoura is one of the few places in the world where the whales hang around for the entire year.

Sperm Whale, Kaikoura

To view more animal photos visit Camera Critters

What A View!

Camera Critters

We snapped this shot during a visit to the Grand Canyon. This squirrel looked as if he was sightseeing and enjoying the view the same as us.

Squirrel, Grand Canyon

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Bute Inlet Bear

Camera Critters

This is one of our holiday shots from our last trip to the US. We visited Vancouver Island, which is actually in Canada, and did a trip over to Bute Inlet in Campbell River to search for grizzly bears.

Bear, Campbell River

We had two sightings, and this is one of them. Personally, I thought this was close enough. They have wicked looking claws.

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Are You Sure It’s My Turn To Work Today?

Camera Critters

I took this photo in Egypt near the St Simeon Monastery. This camel definitely had an attitude.

Camel, Egypt

I think he’s trying to tell his owner he wants a day off. What do you think?

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Just Lying Around, Hanging Out With My Harem

Camera Critters

This week my Camera Critter is an elephant seal. We stopped at Point Piedras Blancas when driving from Monterey down the Big Sur in the US. The male elephant seals look really weird with their “trunks”. They’re definitely not attractive animals. They hang around the beach with harems of females and fight each other. The seal pups are often crushed by the adults who are very large. They’re unpredictable in behavior–definitely not animals to approach on the beach. We kept a healthy distance!

Elephant Seals

Elephant Seals

Elephant Seals

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Mountain Goat

Camera Critters

Hubby and I took this photo of a mountain goat not far from Mt. Rushmore. Mountain goats are not true goats, but are really goat-antelopes. They inhabit alpine areas and are very nimble, able to jump up to twelve feet in one leap. This was one of a group, and they were busy drinking the water trickling down the face of a cliff.

Mountain Goat

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Why Did the Duck and Ducklings Cross the Road?

Camera Critters

We came across this determined duck in Wellington. She was crossing a busy road and the traffic came to a halt while she and her ducklings marched from one side to the other. I couldn’t resist a photo as she headed into the botanical gardens.

Ducks

Why do you think she was crossing the road?

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It’s Time For a Stylish Haircut

Camera Critters

This week’s photo was taken at the local agricultural show. A shearer is demonstrating the shearing process. I can’t decide if the sheep looks happy or not…

Sheep Shearing

What do you think?

To see more animal photos visit Camera Critters