The Kansas City Zoo got residents of a couple local counties to agree to a zoological improvement zone tax. In other words, we’d pay taxes to support the zoo — a non-profit corporation. In exchange for our tax dollars, residents of those counties would be allowed to visit the zoo for free on select days. For this year that includes Mondays in April. So last Monday, April 13, Betsy and I went to the zoo. The kids were in school, so we got to take a day on our own at the zoo.
The zoo is undergoing some significant transformations with the tax dollars. I was working when Betsy and the kids visited the school last year on the free admission day, so it has been at least two years since I visited. The sea lion exhibit was pretty similar to what it had been, but the penguin exhibit and the polar bear exhibits seemed much improved.
The Tiger Trail was somewhat of a disappointment — because they had half of it blocked off for the improvements they are doing. Of course, the trail was a series of cage habitats, that they are replacing with larger habitats to give more natural environments for us to observe the great cats in.
The Australia section had plenty of kangaroos still to see. But the outback station, which used to be about sheep and other life in the Australian outback, has been taken over by a green initiative display which is more about ecology and zoology, and more about politics that animals.
They have a beaks and feet trail where they have cages for many of the birds. It used to be a much bigger section, but here again they eliminated much of it for larger anticipated habitats that aren’t up yet. I was disappointed how it actually limited the flamingo habitat.
Speaking of birds, We found a Peacock in at least three different places in the zoo. In none of them was there a pea hen, which is why I assume none of the peacocks chose to flaunt their tail feathers for us.
Africa was still the biggest, and most distant, of the exhibits. I hadn’t ridden the sky tram before. I consider it a good addition.to the park, and enjoyed the view from the sky immensely.
We enjoyed the Chimpanzee exhibit — closest to the far end of the Sky Tram. We saw a couple of chimps moving around, then suddenly they all started assembling. Not long after pieces of apple started raining down from above — which explained why they suddenly started gathering.
Speaking of the great cats, in the various zones we saw tigers, leopards, cheetahs, etc. Until I realized I really didn’t know the difference between one or another of these spotted ones. I could tell the lions and tigers, but the rest, I do not know which is which.