Monday, 16 November 2015

A trip to Zoo Negara- Our 2nd Wedding Anniversary

Alhamdulillah, both Husbie and I recently celebrated our 2nd wedding anniversary. We were both stumped to how we would like to spend the day together without having to venture out of state or country. Between work, house chores and classes, we couldn't afford to take too much time off.

So, we decided to go to the Zoo.

Yes, you read right, THE ZOO. OUR NATIONAL ZOO.

After 10 years of being together with 2 of them of being married together, we finally got a date at the zoo. I remember requesting a visit to the zoo in the early years of our relationship. Well, better late than never!

The last time I went to our zoo was when I was 9 or 10 years old. Now, with my love and better appreciation for animals, I got to enjoy the visit even more. 

Here are some highlights and dislikes of my visit. The 'dislikes' had nothing to do with the special date but some observations I had of our National Zoo and some tourists' attitudes and behaviours.

Highlights
  1. The entry fee, including for access to the Panda sanctuary, is in general, affordable. I don't mind contributing to our zoo. 
  2. I can see some improvements are being done at the moment. A good sign perhaps that the zoo is looking into improving enclosures for the animals and efforts are underway to make visits for tourists even more memorable.
  3. We got to ride a PINK tram, to Husbie's dismay.
  4. LOVE the picture souvenirs. There are different types of frames to go with your polaroids. My ultimate fave would be the Panda frames. RM30 each.
  5. Many of the animals are generally well taken care of with some exceptions. Further elaborations on the matter will be under my 'Dislikes'.
  6. Staff are super helpful and friendly.
  7. Mid-way during our visit, my feet were hurting so bad I just had to go back to the car to change into my FlipFlops. The security marked my ticket, allowed me to go to the carpark and come back in to continue with our day. Wohooo!
  8. I got to feed the Orang Utan which was good. However, my actions raised some minor confusion with one Australian couple. They thought I was feeding them on my own accord for our own entertainment. The person even narrated it in her video cam for the folks back home! NO WAY OK!!! I know better. They didn't see the caretaker standing next to me and passing me the bananas to feed Maya and Rukiah (the names of the female Orang Utans). The caretaker was not as fluent in English so I had to explain to them that the zoo has a very strict policy in feeding animals and the caretaker next to me was the one who gave permission and passed me the bananas. Hmpphh! Perhaps, the caretakers and staff at the zoo should update their uniform to a green coloured shirt with khaki pants. The black staff shirt clearly doesn't work!
  9. We almost got Hippo Poop splattered on our persons. Yes, this is a highlight I guess cos' it was funny. We escaped of course but the Hubs couldn't stop laughing.
  10. We got to spend a whole day at the zoo! Due to the rain, we had to take shelter in one of their restaurants. I think it is the only restaurant there ala-ala KFC. Hmm...I remember a KFC or was it an A&W in the zoo when I was little. What happened? Sayangnyer!
Dislikes
  1. Finding out that tourists continue to disregard notices and throw ciggies, plastic, aluminium cans and rubbish into animal enclosures and feed the animals junkfood. 
  2. Tourists not respecting animals. There was this couple who posed for pictures with their foot on top of the Galapagos Turtles' back. Shame on you!!! 
  3. The male lion looked old or sickly. I mean it's well enough and I know the Zoo is trying their best with limited funds. 
  4. I observed for myself, for the first time, how animals in the zoo, specifically the Malayan Tiger and the Grizzly Bear in our National Zoo, are suffering from what they call stereotypy. You see, this happens a lot to captive animals. The animal would pace back and forth or in circles continuously. Some may even proceed to self-harm or injury and even excess self-grooming. Major factors to the cause of stereotypy include small enclosures, artificial environments and lack of mental stimulation. There are solutions to stereotypy. Just hope the zoo's veterinary team is in the midst of identifying the best method to help the animals or execution for a solution is already underway. 
  5. The food and drinks in the zoo are too expensive. A drink can cause up to RM5. Haiyohh!
  6. Repetitive types of animals in different enclosures. I think there were three separate enclosures for tapirs alone at different areas in the zoo.


So, here's a picture of the corny picture with the Panda frame we took at the Zoo. Currently residing at the Hubs' office, hopefully making him smile everyday when he gazes at it.

Do visit and support our National Zoo. It is worth it! In fact, if you can spare the time, they even have volunteer programmes for those interested.