Fiona and Friends at the Cincinnati Zoo

Back in July, we went to Kentucky for a long weekend. On the way down, we stopped into a zoo we hadn’t visited in almost ten years. We had last been to Cincinnati Zoo in 2010, when we went to visit my friend Andrew who lived there at the time. I remembered it being a beautiful place, very hilly and well-landscaped, with lots of old brick buildings. I’m happy to say that it was as lovely as I remembered, and even though it poured rain a good portion of our visit, we had a great time and took some good pictures.

Sleeping Red Panda, Cincinnati Zoo

Sleeping Red Panda, Cincinnati Zoo

The red panda exhibit was a lot like Detroit zoo’s, with the pandas on a little island surrounded by a ditch and a low fence. The pandas were up in the trees and very visible, especially this lazy fellow who just wanted to sleep.

Lemur Huddle

Lemur Huddle

Apparently, a group of lemurs is called a conspiracy. 😂 These guys looked like they were up to something. I really like these kinds of exhibits, where the animals are at eye level, high up on a rocky island surrounded by a moat.

Sunbittern

Sunbittern

The name “Sunbittern” is appealing on many levels. Just saying it makes me think of morning in some dappled jungle, sunlight streaming through the leaves and the scent of fruit and rain in the air. Also, “bittern” makes me think of “bitters”, so I picture a veranda and a pitcher of gin and tonics. None of this says anything about the bird or the zoo, so let me tell you that Cincinnati has a lovely walk-through jungle aviary and this guy lives there.

Fiona Smiles

Fiona Smiles

Fiona is, of course, the reason we came. She captivated the world (or maybe just the Midwest?) a few years ago, as the first prematurely-born hippo baby to ever survive in captivity. The zoo has really marketed the hell out of her, which is appropriate because she is adorable. You’ll be happy to know that you can buy a #TeamFiona t-shirt in the gift shop. It was raining like crazy when we came through Fiona’s exhibit and there was a crowd of people hiding under the roofed area in front of her. There was no roof over Fiona’s quarters and she seemed to alternate between stoic and annoyed. Resting her head on her mama’s back, she gave the crowd a wistful hippo smile.

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