Sunday July 17, 2005

Actually, the Leopards were hiding...

Yesterday was the day of the Leopards Etc. Open House. The Open House is a fund-raising event where a small number (in this case, 64 max.) of guests pay to visit the Leopards Etc compound, eat lunch, and see the cats in their home environment. It's tax dedutable, for a very worth cause, and a wonderful way to spend a day! (Write-ups of Leopards Etc. educational programs we've attended: here, here, and here.)

The minivan drove us up into the hills to the compound. It's a pretty drive. We arrived, got our name tags (great idea) and some water, used the restroom, and then wandered off to look at the cats.

This was an adult-only event and, while there were volunteers watching carefully and available for questions, there was no "guided tour". We just walked around and admired the Big Kitties. (And, being kitties, they appreciated being admired.)

Most of them the cats out, although we were told that the clouded leopard was in her crate in the garage (she doesn't like strangers) and the other leopards were hiding in their boxes in their enclosures.

Purrrr, Hath!, Grwwwwwwwwwll, rubrubrub

I saw Kamau, the male cheetah, under the tree in the "cheetah play yard" and walked down to say hello (quietly). He stalked me a bit. I heard Barbara up at the nametag table say "Oh, someone must be down on the road. Kamau is stalking".

We reached an agreement. He lay down in the shade again, flopped on his side and purred madly while he kept an eye on me and I talked very softly.

After a bit I went to see other cats. Many of them were awake but hot. Kgosi, the king cheetah, was lying in his enclosure, also purring and looking fairly calm. Apparently cheetahs like to show their tummies and have people admire them.

I walked over where the Caracal, Mara, was. She was in her box, but came out. She likes to talk (hath). She's lovely. Such ears!

The ocelot is next door to the Caracal and was trotting back and forth growling at everyone. Such a BIG growl for such a little cat. Such lovely fur. Such ripples. Wow!

The serval has a wading pool in his enclosure. The volunteers were tossing bits of meat into the pool and the serval traps them under water and kills" them. Apparently sometimes he gets real "feeder fish".

I walked down to meet the lynxes. Another guest was sitting on the gravel by Oksana's cage (a female Siberian lynx) and Oksana had taken a real liking to her. The woman was talking softly and moving her head in a rubbing motion. Oksana was rubbing her head on the wire of the enclosure. Then she lay down and stuck her huge paws out through the gap under the lower board. Such biiiig paws. We knew we couldn't touch but ooooh how tempting. One of Oksana's toes is the size of Squirrels entire paw (and Squirrel has big paws). ...
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Actually, the Leopards were hiding... - posted at Sun, 17 Jul, 09:07 Pacific | Comments (0)