Funny faces at the farm.

Right before everything closed I stopped by Horsepower for Kids, the non-profit rescue farm to walk around and just be outside. The weather was still cool. They strictly rely on donations and admission fees to feed the animals and now that they are closed they are hurting for funds.

The turtles in the pond were coming up on the bank to sun themselves.

Funny faces staring back at me.

A capybara taking a dip. These guys are from South American and this one was a pet that someone realized they didn’t want after all and gave up to the farm.

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Nice morning at the zoo

Fun animals at Zoo Tampa in late February. The weather was cool so many of the animals were moving around. This was the first time in a long time I’ve seen the bears playing together.

The eagle was stretching and you can see he has part of his wing missing. He was injured out in the wild and lives at the zoo now. The other eagle was sitting high up in the tree looking over the zoo.

The lorikeets were all flirting and preening.

I can’t go to the zoo and not take a ton of manatee pictures.

My Corner of the World

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Quick walk at the zoo

I rarely see these guys moving around.

The koala bears are so cute but the glare on window makes it impossible to get a decent picture of them.

The elephants were eating.

It’s rare to see the otters close to the glass but this one was right in front.

The rhino pausing at the pool.

More up close with the manatees. I always take a ton of pictures when I’m there.

I recently hurt my shoulder (tendonitis) and was hurting one weekend but I still wanted to get out for a walk so I went over to the zoo with only my phone. I had a fun morning running around without all of my camera stuff.

Secrets at my zoo

It’s always fun to watch the orangutans playing at the zoo.

These ladies were not loving the paparazzi this morning.

More cute primates.

The elephants were busy eating.

I never see this guy moving around but he was the morning I was there in late December. Must have been the cool weather.

If you have the National Geographic channel, they have been doing a series at the zoo. Secrets of the Zoo:Tampa is now airing.  It’s weird to recognize I place I go to so often on tv and it’s fun to see the behind the scenes there.

More from MOTE Aquarium

It’s not often you get this close to a shark.  Above are some of the bigger things under water at MOTE Aquarium in Sarasota.

The Aquarium rehabilitates and houses permanently injured turtles, manatees and dolphins. The turtle above was missing an eye.

We don’t have crocodiles in the Tampa Bay area, at least not yet. They can be found in areas much farther south including the Everglades. I’ve never seen one out in wild. They look very comical, almost like a cartoon.

Pretty flowers in the water at aquarium.

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Hanging with the spoonies

The roseate spoonbills that live at the Florida Aquarium have a big aviary to hang out in. Early in the morning if you get there when they first open, the spoonbills usually hang out right up front, at the edge of the water in the exhibit. It was quiet and they were running around feeding and squabbling over the best spots. As the aquarium gets busy the spoonbills fly up in the trees and nap. It’s cool to see these beautiful birds up close.

Big things swimming by.

I love seeing the big sting rays at the aquarium. It’s funny how they have faces underneath. I think that first one was smiling at me.

It’s fun to watch the kids go crazy over the sharks. You get to see them close up.

A turtle cruising by.

There’s something hypnotic about watching the fish swim by.

More fun from my September visit to the Florida Aquarium in Tampa.

Other stuff at the Florida Aquarium

It’s not often you can get close up to a ruddy duck or a wood duck. They are very different than the common mallards or muscovy ducks that most people see in their neighborhoods.

Turtles and alligators. The funny thing in the bottom picture is that the alligator has his foot on the other alligator’s head.

Scenes from the top deck of the Aquarium, looking down the channel and around the city. I know it looks like it was too pretty a day to be inside but it was so hot and humid that it was nice to spend the morning in air conditioning.

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Just keep swimming

Because I’m a member of the Tampa zoo, I get in free to the Florida Aquarium in September. Which works out perfect because by the time September comes around I’m tired of being outside in the heat and want to do something indoors. I get there right when it opens before the crowds cover the glass. I was using Auto mode on my camera with no flash since the flash would just put a big spotlight in the picture. And most of the exhibits don’t allow flash anyway. It’s too hard to bring a tripod in with even the smallest crowd. A lot of these were taken with my phone as well.

 

Seahorses are everyone’s favorite but it’s really hard to see them. They keep it dark in the room and no flash allowed. These were taken with my phone.

Always fun to see jellyfish floating upside down.

I call these boob jellyfish.

This little guy was so cute. He was very animated.

I took a ton of pictures since it was nice and cool inside so more to come. The Aquarium is fun until it’s crowded. When I left before noon it was wall to wall people and you had to wait to get close to the glass. I would suggest going during the week when school is in if you can to keep from bumping into kids.