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DVOC Field Trip Report

November 4, 2006 (Saturday) - The Philadelphia Zoo

Report by Adrian Binns

Click Here for pictures by Adrian Binns

Twenty-four of us were treated to an extraordinary morning behind the scenes at the zoo thanks to the ever-so-enthusiastic Wendy Lenhart.

Following a stroll around the grounds where numerous robins were feeding on holly berries; kinglets, in particular Golden-crowned were flitting about, and we got to watch a Hermit Thrush feeding on porcelain berries, we joined Amy, the penguin keeper, to watch her feed the Humboldt Penguins (gourmet trout of course) and got a great deal of amusement when one of the penguins strolled into a nesting hut and came out with a beak full of leaves that he had just swiped in order to restock his own nest. Wendy then showed us the elaborate new plans for the McNeil Aviary, which certainly meet with a great deal of approval, before heading to her favorite birds the Southern Ground Hornbills. Here we broke off into small groups to feed them crickets and mice heads! Next up was a pair of Hooded Cranes which ready excepted their food, particularly enjoying the berries, before we headed indoors to the Jungle Walk and the dozen or so colorful species that inhabit the Bird House including Golden-breasted Starlings, Fairy Bluebirds, Ringed Teal, Blue-headed Tanagers, Mariana Fruit Doves, a Nicobar Pigeon, a Palawan Peacock Pheasant and the amazing Victoria Crowned Pigeons. The Inca Terns were feed and in order for the Hammerkops to get their treats they had to stand on a scale to get weighed first. Back outside the Andean Condors had to perform the same feat in order to receive a quail or two and Brown Pelicans had no problem gulping down one fish after another.

Following a little lunch break some of us wondered around viewing White Rhinoceros, Common Zebra, Giraffe, Gray-crowned Cranes, Red-breasted Geese, Mandarin Duck, Bearded Pig, Baboon, Sloth and Polar Bears, Red Pandas, Peacocks and a variety of cats including Lions and Cheetahs.

Species Seen:
Canada Geese; Ring-billed Gull; Herring Gull; Rock Pigeon; Blue Jay; Cedar Waxwing; American Robin; Veery (1); Hermit Thrush (3); Carolina Chickadee; Tufted Titmouse; Ruby-crowned Kinglet (2); Golden-crowned Kinglet (20+); Cardinal; Mockingbird; Carolina Wren; Yellow-rumped Warbler (1); White-throated Sparrow; Song Sparrow; Dark-eyed Junco; Common Grackle; Starling; House Finch; House Sparrow

Pictures by Adrian Binns

© A & J Binns

© A & J Binns