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Nature’s Beauty – Wild & Wonderful Yet Captive & Stressed


Nature's Beauty Truth & Love Uncategorized What's Going On In The World

Zoo Snow Leopard- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

The Mini-Guru’s class took a field trip to the Pittsburgh Zoo recently. 

The trip was fast and action-packed. With limited time and lots to see, we only stayed at each exhibit for only a few moments before rushing off to the next. Luckily, I was able to capture some great photos and quick videos before we had to move on.

These below are my favorites. I replaced the children’s background chatter with music on the videos. YOU can see these and more great nature videos on my YOUTube page!

Like this friendly flamingo stretching out its wings which I captured on video, as well.

Zoo Flamingo- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

Zoo Flamingo- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

It’s hard emotionally to feel such an appreciation for getting to view these animals up close and personal, yet, to witness effects their captivity seems to have on them.

Zoo Polar Bear Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

Zoo Polar Bear Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

Like the polar bear who appeared to be dancing to the kids, yet, kept repeating the behavior incessantly. And, this tiger who continuously paced the edge of his outdoor cage.

Zoo Tiger- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

Zoo Tiger- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

I was able to capture many great photos and videos of their personalities and behavior in the few seconds I was able to observe them.

Zoo Monkey- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

Zoo Monkey- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

It was almost as if they were showing off the main points of this post, their magnificence and the behavior they’ve adopted from their location to give us the full picture.

Zoo Red Panda- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

Zoo Red Panda- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

I did note that the Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium was home to several animals with injuries that may have caused them difficulty surviving in the wild. And, when the kids attended a class to learn about polar animals, the staff was adamant about the environment being as unstressful for the animals as possible. The kids remained quiet, kept their hands in their laps as instructed and only pet a few strokes of fur or feathers with two fingers as the instructor indicated when she displayed the animals.

Zoo pig- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

Zoo pig- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

I couldn’t help but compare these circumstances to that of the “rat park” study about addiction. They observed rats in ordinary cages choose drugs over boredom and stress, while those in a park-like setting with friends and all the trappings of life a rat could enjoy display healthier behavior.

The zoo animals definitely had a park environment, but, for some of them at least, it wasn’t enough. 

Humans are also animals with a wild nature at heart, born into a world we are free to roam, yet are held captive in many ways, sometimes physically and often emotionally. The behaviors PETA describes as “zoochosis” seem eerily similar to those of people who are unable to cope with their environment, as well. According to PETA.org, the animals “often rock, sway, or pace endlessly, and some even resort to hurting themselves by chewing on their own fingers or limbs or pulling out their fur or feathers.”

These elephants were communicating strongly with each other over something.

Zoo Elephants- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

Zoo Elephants- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

Since nature is one of our greatest teachers in that, like kids, it, thankfully, responds openly and freely to its environment without pretense and can, thereby, help us look honestly at the effects of the way we live our daily lives.

Zoo Lion- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

Zoo Lion- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

Zoo Lion- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

Zoo Lion- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

We need to feel free to roam, even if we can’t physically. 

Zoo Ostrich- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

Zoo Ostrich– Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

The snow leopard in the main post photo was captivating as he stretched and scratched his post before walking up the limb towards me. Unfortunately, I stopped the video just as he leaped from that position onto an even higher branch, displaying his remarkable power and graceful movement. A zebra seemed to know who was boss in this video with his giraffe enclosure mate.

Zoo Giraffe- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

Zoo Giraffe- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

Luckily, as humans, we can use our imagination to create worlds outside of the physical one we live in. Art does that; music, painting, dance, and cinema. We use those things to escape our everyday ordinary world and create something fantastical.

These jellyfish and snuggling seahorses appear magical just as they are.

Zoo Jelly Fish- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

Zoo Jelly Fish- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

Zoo Tiger- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

Zoo Seahorses- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

Even sleep is an escape into dreamland and our inner world, and why we daydream when we need a break from reality. A connection to the Divine through faith, prayer, and a deep, personal relationship is your instinctual portal to the natural mystical experiences that take you beyond ordinary physical sense perception. It’s more fun and life-giving than you would likely imagine.

I captured the perfect final video of Siamang Gibbons in full swing as we hustled past to catch the bus home.

Zoo Siamang Gibbons- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

Zoo Siamang Gibbons- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

Love is certainly the ideal and most natural transporter to freedom. It’s why we chase it in all its forms. Luckily, we can create the essence within ourselves, regardless of our surroundings. Romance, passion projects, entertainment, fun, ease, and finding that home base of love within our own hearts. Loving these animals and appreciating their beauty is enough for this moment.

Zoo Rhino- Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

Zoo Rhino– Photo Copyright © 2018 Lisa Henry, All rights reserved

They are divine!

*Note:  Passing by the exhibits so quickly with a school class, I was unable to capture the specific name of each species. I researched on the web and even tried to contact the zoo to determine the correct names with no luck. Luckily, names are not required to enjoy the view! If YOU happen to know, please feel free to leave a note in the comments!



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