Wednesday, August 28, 2013

cheetah magic

My husband and son bought me a cheetah experience for Christmas, but it wasn't until the 11th of July that I could use it. Worth the wait!  I got to the Auckland Zoo early, the time with the cheetah starts at 8.00am and lasts for 1 1/2 hours so that we had the zoo practically to ourselves.  There was one other person, a young woman on the tour with me, four zoo staff and 2 cheetah.  Anubis and Osiris are twins, orphaned early and have spent all their lives in zoos.  They led us around the zoo grounds, into the elephant enclosure (Burma wasn't out of bed at the time), to look out at the skateboarders and geese in Western Springs, to look at the traffic along Motions Road, through the Vetinerary Dept, past the NZ birds free flight area and back to their enclosure.  Although they were on leads, Anubis and Osiris were in charge of where we went.  They have mastered the 1000 metre stare, looking into the distance, sometimes right over my shoulder.  They leapt up onto rocks and tables ti improve their view, but also to allow us to stoke them.  One of them has a short mohawk sort of mane, the other has more belly fur.  The large dark brown spots and interspersed with smaller lighter spots.  Their toenails don't retract, they look a bit like dogs' nails (very sturdy).  Their ears are expressive whilst the rest of their face remains still.  Their eyes are dark brown with a round pupil (unlike night-hunting cats with a slit pupil)

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