Thursday, 17 May 2012

Returning to the zoo

I did say I'd share some Chester Zoo photos, didn't I? (thank you, lovely husband)...

This was the image of the day. We had such a good time, and it really did feel like 'conservation in action'. But. But...

But this orangutan, so close to our species, sat right at the window and stared at us. There was quite a crowd standing on the other side staring back at him. It just made me wonder what he was thinking, seeing the hoard of noisy onlookers jostle to take his photograph, faces replacing with new faces as the onlookers were replaced ad infinitum.

Looking into his eyes, it's almost one of us looking back. And the only thing it can make you think of is what those eyes would have seen if he was 'home'. He was probably bred in captivity, but his species should be looking out onto the verdant green of a luscious, diverse, intricate forest. I know his species are in peril, and that in the zoo (which was wonderful, and all the animals seemed well looked after) he was safe, but it just doesn't feel truly right. His was a sort of pensive sadness, looking back at us. His world was small and concrete-edged. The rolling hills of neverending rainforest territory are such a contrast. I couldn't help feeling so sorry for him and, on behalf of our species, so guilty.

Of course we saw lots of other animals. The Little One loved the giraffes the best. The Tiny One loved the monkeys. The Big One liked the sloths and cheetahs. And nothing else we saw gave me that sharp pang of guilt and sadness that hasn't fully gone away. Everything else seemed content, at home, looked after. Oh Mr Orangutan, you poor lost soul.

Thought I'd end with a few photos of less cliched zoo animals. Et voila...

1 comment:

  1. It's always strange to see such intelligence looking back at you from behind the glass at the zoo and hard not project your own feelings upon them. I know having an ever-changing sea of faces staring at me and banging on my windows at all times would probably drive me more than a bit batty.

    Love & Lollies... Jessa

    Caked Vintage Blog


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