Tag Archives | zoo

Inside Paris’s Belle Époque-Era Human Zoo

human zooMessy Nessy Chic on a surreal symbol of the history of colonialism — the human zoo:

In the furthest corner of the Vincennes woods of Paris lies the remains of what was once a public exhibition to promote French colonialism over 100 years ago and what we can only refer to today as the equivalent of a human zoo.

In 1907, six different villages were built in the Jardin d’Agronomie Tropicale, representing all corners of the French colonial empire at the time– Madagascar, Indochine, Sudan, Congo, Tunisia and Morocco. The villages and their pavillions were built to recreate the life and culture as it was in their original habitats. This included mimicking the architecture, importing the agriculture and appallingly, inhabiting the replica houses with people, brought to Paris from the faraway territories.

Over one million curious visitors [attended] from May until October 1907 when it ended. Today, the Jardin d’Agronomie Tropicale is kept out of sight behind rusty padlocked gates, abandoned and decaying.

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Orangutans Use Tablets To Chat With Friends In Other Zoos

iMahal-largeBored orangutans enjoy using iPads to video chat with their fellow kind in other zoos – it seems that we’re all just monkeys poking at the glowing screens we’ve been given by our handlers. Via Popular Science:

Orangutans living in captivity will soon start using iPads for primate play-dates, using Skype or FaceTime to interact with their brethren in other zoos, according to zookeepers. The great apes have been playing with iPads for about six months at the Milwaukee County Zoo, and they’ve been such a hit that other zoos plan to introduce them, too.

The “Apps for Apes” program started after a zookeeper commented online about getting some iPads for her gorilla charges. Someone donated a used iPad, and it turned out the gorillas didn’t care for it. But the orangutans loved it.

Seeing the primates with iPads has an effect on zoo visitors, according to Richard Zimmerman, who directs Orangutan Outreach: “They have this recognition that these are amazing, cognitive, curious creatures,” he told the Times.

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Deadly Cobra Escapes Bronx Zoo

2962457883_9b5ccdb02fA poisonous Egyptian cobra slipped out of its cage this weekend, the New York Daily News reports. By this time, it may have caught a downtown 6 train to Greenwich Village or elsewhere, possibly taking the connecting ferry to Staten Island.

A 20-inch cobra slithered out of its cage in the Bronx Zoo Saturday, forcing the exhibit to close while workers searched for the venomous serpent, officials said.

The adolescent Egyptian cobra went missing from an off-exhibit enclosure sometime in the afternoon and zookeepers quickly closed off the Reptile House, officials said.

Workers canvassed the building, eying several closed-in spaces that the reptile would naturally be drawn to coil inside, officials said.

The snake – native to Africa and the Arabian Peninsula – was not recovered Saturday night, officials said.

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Bringing Zoo Animals Back To Life

Photo: Male and female drill

Photo: Male and female drill

The San Diego zoo and The Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, California have joined together to conduct research on reproducing rare animals.  The frozen stems cells, in theory, will allow a basis to create sperm and eggs in order to create a reproduction. Paul Aldhous of New Science magazine goes into detail:

“At the annual meeting of the International Society for Stem Cell Research in San Francisco last week, Inbar Friedrich Ben-Nun and Jeanne Loring of Scripps described how they have created induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells from the frozen skin cells of a deceased male drill (Madrillus Ieucophaeus) an endangered monkey found in Nigeria, Cameroon, and Equatorial Guinea.

The team’s long-term goal is to coax iPS cells into becoming sperm and eggs. They will be making iPS cells from tissue held by San Diego zoo’s Frozen Zoo project – which has samples from some 8400 individuals representing more than 800 species.

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