Monday, April 16, 2012

Spring Break - part 2 - Lions & Tigers & Bears...


On Tuesday afternoon, we headed up a few miles north to a zoo like place called Cat Tales.  It's part zoo, part rescue sanctuary, part learning facility for EWU students and it was unlike anything that I had ever seen before.  The animals (GIANT tigers, leopards, jaguars and such) were so close...separated by little chain link fences and a few feet of gravel.  I didn't feel totally safe, but I figured that they had been around for a long time and obviously no one had been mauled by a big cat yet, so our odds were good.
I'm so glad that we went.  I really think it was a once in a lifetime type adventure.  Besides going on an African safari, I can't imagine having the opportunity to see these beautiful creatures so close up. 
It really was amazing. 
Our little group ready to see the cats!

See what I mean, not feeling totally safe at this point?

Carter and Johnny holding their "bear adventure" passes.
For a small $10 fee, the boys were allowed to feed real live giant animals.  Carter and Johnny got to feed bears and Brock fed raw meet to a tiger.  Super.  All kidding aside, it really was so cool.  Carter took his job very seriously and listened intently as the employee went over the rules.  I think he was a bit scared but he was very brave.

Since Kennedy wasn't old enough, she settled for a stuffed variety.  Loved her little lion!

Johnny was first up, feeding a big brown bear named Oscar.  The workers placed chunks of apple on the end of a long stick and then the kids pushed it through a hole of a Plexiglas cage.  The animals do this many times a day, so they were surprisingly gentle about the whole thing.

Before Carter's turn, they rotated the bears.  Oscar went out back and they brought in a big black bear named Oso.  Carter did great feeding him his apples and then as the last piece was given, he had to loudly say "last one Oso."  He was so proud of himself!
Check out the tongue on that bear!

Brock's adventure was feeding a female tiger.  She had been born in captivity and was so gentle.  She took the meat ever so softly and patiently waited for more.  Brock was so excited!

How cute is this little scene?
Two tigers and a lioness just lounging together...we were less than 10 feet away.

white tiger
Extinct in the wild since 1950, the only remaining white tigers are in captivity.  There are very few in the world, so I thought it was especially neat that we got to see one.  They have two at this facility, both male and stunningly beautiful.

a fun little adventure

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