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Unnecessary Zoo Tycoon 2 Animals

Discussion in 'Games, Simulators, Quizzes & Competitions' started by Loxodonta Cobra, 14 May 2018.

  1. Loxodonta Cobra

    Loxodonta Cobra Well-Known Member

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    This one is for all zoo tycoon fans. There’s already a thread like this on ZT2 Round Table, so I thought that I'd make a version on zoochat. There are 130 animals in Zoo Tycoon 2, however for any zt gamers out there, were there any animals that just made you go what? And if there are, what would you replace them with and why? There are alot of animals that the games didn’t add obviously, but I feel like a lot of these choices are sturgeon’s law. You can move animals around from one expansion pack to another.


    Zoo Tycoon 2 - This is the game that I would change the least out of the five as it does a great job featuring animals that would be expected to be seen in zoos across the world. However, there are species that I would change in favor of others.


    . American Beaver - beavers are iconic and well known, but their hardly seen in the biggest zoos. I’d replace them with a capybara: they can go in wetland biome, and this would make the jaguar no longer the only animal from Latin America.

    . Black Rhinoceros - I would replace this with the white rhinoceros from African Adventures as they’re more common in more ways than one.

    . Emperor Penguin - Emperors though perhaps the most popular penguin species to the general public, are one of the rarest penguin species in captivity. I’d replace it with a humboldt penguin, as it’s far more common in zoos.

    . Gemsbok - Even without African Adventure, the original zoo tycoon is biased in favor of African animals. I’d replace the gemsbok with a giant anteater as we get a scrubland/savannah animal that isn’t African and is popular to the zoo public.

    . Mountain Gorilla - Really? The mountain gorillas are popular, but the western lowland gorillas are the only species that are breed in captivity in the Western world.


    Besides these, I would actually add animals from other expansion packs into the original one because they’re all animals that I would expect to see as a generic, non-enthusiast visitor. I’s add the:

    . California Sea Lion (MM)

    . Meerkat, Warthog, Bongo, Mandrill & Blue Wildebeest (AA)

    . African Wild Dog, American Bison, Gray Wolf, Komodo Dragon, Galapagos Tortoise, Bornean Orangutan, & Koala (ES)


    Bonus:

    . Black Leopard - Why do they just have the color morph and not the actual species or subspecies? I would choose an Amur leopard so that we have an actual subspecies.

    . Addax - Move to African Adventure and replace it with a black bear. The asiatic one was supposed to have been a download, but was removed from the zt2 website, so I would prefer the American species as it’s much more common in zoos in the west.

    . Musk Ox - This is a very unusual choice for a species to be bonus content in zt2; they aren't really that common in captivity per say. I’d replace it with the caribou from ES, that way we keep the tundra biome and have at least one more deer in the game after the moose.


    Endangered Species - I know that a lot of the animals whose conservation status isn’t threatened are species that were brought back from extinction because of ex-situ conservation, but I still think that there are rarer species that could’ve been selected. With so much of the original game, and African Adventures focusing on African fauna, I tried to focus Endangered Species on North and South America, Oceania, Far East, and Southeast Asia.


    . African Wild Dogs - Now that they’re in the original game, i’d replace it with a dhole, a one of the rarer of the large canines not just in the wild, but in zoos as well.

    . American Bison - Replace with a species of takin, which has yet to make an official appearance in any of the zt games.

    . Black-Crested Gibbon - It’s a good choice, but i’m trying to choose species that are present in captivity at the moment and there isn’t any of these gibbons in any collections that i’m aware of. I’d choose a siamang to replace them.

    . Bornean Orangutan - I’ll choose a species of spider monkey to replace them; New world primates are non-existent in zt2.

    . Caribou - Replace with a pere david’s deer. Extinct in the wild, biome is wetlands, and is a large and attractive species.

    . Fennec Fox - Why BlueFang? Why did you give us such a non-threatened canine to be our small canine species for the game. I would choose an Island Fox over a fennec.

    . Giant Sable Antelope - Enough with the African megafauna already. I’d replace it with a saiga, so that we get a creature that can share the temperate grasslands with the bison and wild horses whilst being critically endangered.

    . Gray Wolf - Wolves are a great species for highlight conservation success stories on, but there are other canine species to choose from besides the gray wolf. And there are even more species to choose from besides canines. I’d pick a kakapo to replace it.

    . Galapagos Tortoise - Replace with a Chinese giant salamander, there are no amphibians in the game, and it make one heck of a great animal to have.

    . Javan Rhinoceros - Javan rhino numbers are actually rising which is great. The other Indonesian rhino species, the Sumatran rhino is still on the decrease, so I would pick it, as it’s also a more interesting animal visually and taxonomically.

    . Koala - Replace with a Tasmanian devil, They’re just starting to make a comeback in the west.

    . Komodo Dragon - With the changes made up to this point, we have crocs, lizards, and tortoises in the game, yet we still lack snakes. Seeing how this is endangered species, I’ll choose a king cobra, despite not really having any sophisticated way to keep it.

    . Markhor - We have multiple animals from the alpines of Asia, and this will be the last: a golden snub-nosed monkey, as we don’t have a primate that isn’t from a rainforest up until this point.

    . Spectacled Bear - There are already four bear species in the original game with my change, it makes no sense to have any more. I would choose a whooping crane so that we get another North American Animal, and as well as a bird which was absent from the pack. Seriously though, Blue Fang seemed scared of having animals that can fly(there were only 9 avian species in the game series).


    There are two animals that I would add to this game: the pacific walrus and the sea otter from MM.


    African Adventure - This expansion pack is the lowest rated of the five and it’s easy to see why, I have-heartingly expected to see some form of new gameplay, but pretty much the same stuff is copied from Endangered Species(case in point the elevated paths, jeep safaris ect). And a lot of the animals that were chosen were uninspiring to me as a kid. Some of which occured in more places than Africa. I’m going to try to focus this to Africa-only animals, while trying focusing on ungulates.


    . African Spurred Tortoise - Who thought that this was a good idea? I would love to replace it with another bird species such as a shoebill.

    . Blue Wildebeest - Replace with a giant eland, as it’s a interesting animal due to its size and rarity.

    . Bongo - Replace with a klipspringer, so that we have another african alpine animal besides the gelada and ethiopian wolf.

    . Caracal - Come on? You choose one of the cats who’s range extends outside of Africa? I would choose a black-footed cat to replace it.

    . Mandrill - There was a large lack of primates that were mostly arboreal in this expansion pack, and Africa has some really great primate species. To replace the mandrill, I would settle on a species of colobus.

    . Masai Giraffe - This was just completely unnecessary. We already have a giraffe subspecies, and the Masai’s only represented in in North American collections under the AZA. I would replace it with a crested porcupine so that we get a temperate forest animal like the barbary macaque.

    . Meerkat - I would like to have another madagascan animal in the game, and since we already have a lemur, I’d choose a fossa to replace the meerkat.

    . Nile Monitor - What is it with this expansion and making species in the same family as their ES counterparts instead of choosing different herps? Since the monitor is a wetland animal, I’d replace it with a species of lechwe.

    . Striped Hyena - Why did they replace the spotted hyena from the original zt2 game with this species? I’d think a social spotted hyena would be more enriching to visitors as opposed to the more solitary striped hyena.

    . Warthog - I would choose one of the African species of pangolins. They’re an endangered group with alot of education & conservation value to them, they've just been exported to zoos in the AZA, and there isn't a zt2 game that comes with them.

    . White Rhinoceros - This is now in the original zt2, and I personally wouldn’t place the black rhino here. I feel like that would be oversaturation. I would choose a hyrax species to replace it since we get another small mammal in the series and it could go into exhibits with the Gelada(Baboon Mountain anyone?).


    Marine Mania - Half of the animals on this expansion pack consisted of six toothed whales, and five sharks. There’s so many unique and iconic choices that could’ve been chosen in marine life that this expansion is wholly underrepresented in the diversity of life. Also, what are there whale and great white sharks in benthic biome? I know that they can dive down to those depths, but I wouldn’t place them in it as their permanent/prefered habitat. If there was another expansion pack that needed thirty animals like the original game, this would be the one.


    Blue Marlin - This animal isn’t in captivity at all; it makes no sense to have it in an aquarium where in reality it would bang its head against the wall and kill itself. Also it’s our only bony fish in the whole game. I would replace it with an ocean sunfish because we’d get a fish species that can actually go into aquarium and it’s also pelagic.

    . Blacktip Reef Shark - Like I said, there are way too many sharks, especially since there's only twenty slots available. However, it would be good if we had another cartilage fish species like a sawfish species.

    . California Sea Lion - Now that the sea lion and walrus are gone, I want to choose some of the rarer pinniped species in captivity, and I’d replace the sea lion with a elephant seal species like in the original game.

    . False killer whale - If we are going to have six cetaceans, there should be more diversity to them than all toothed whales. As unrealistic as it is, one of the larger baleen whale species would be a very interesting choice. I’ll replace the false killer whale with a humpback.

    . Goblin Shark - Another group of animals that is absent from Marine Mania is invertebrates. I’ll replace the goblin shark with a giant pacific octopus due to its benthic habitat and its familiarity with the general public.

    . Narwhal - Replace with a leopard seal so that we keep that polar animal spot, plus it would be more realistic to have since leopard seals were in captivity until four years ago, while narwhals die soon after going into captivity.

    . Leatherback Sea Turtle - I love leatherbacks, but I don’t see a reason as to why we need to have two sea turtles in a twenty animal species list. I’d replace it with another marine reptile that is never kept in captivity, a marine iguana.

    . Pacific Walrus - With this gone, I’ll choose one more pinniped, a hawaiian monk seal due to its rarity and uniqueness.

    . Sea Otter - Wildlife Park 2 had japanese spider crabs in its expansion pack, why not have it in this? It would be our only crustation, and it would be a benthic animal like the octopus.

    . Short-finned Pilot Whale - I’m going to take a break from the concept of “Marine” Mania for a second and choose an animal that belongs in freshwater. We have a number of semi-aquatic freshwater animals in the game but we don’t have any fully-aquatic ones. My choose is an amazon river dolphin because even though it keeps us at six cetaceans and is currently down to one animal in the Western world, I find it more charismatic as a species than a gar or catfish. And besides, it’d be cool to have a river dolphin there at all.

    . Rockhopper Penguin - We already have a penguin species for the original game, and there are far more seabirds than just penguins. My choice, as obscure as it may be, would be an albatross species.


    Extinct Animals - Where do I begin with this one? Supposedly BF was in a hurry to release this expansion pack, which is why so many animals look, and have the same animations as others before them. I know that there are some people here who think that zoo tycoon shouldn’t delve into extinct species, but despite this I actually have a soft spot for EA. I love paleontology and extinct fauna, and I know that this game was out around the time when Jurassic Park Operation Genesis was the dominant dinosaur park-keeping game. I feel like the creators had a sense of this and it could possibly explain their animal choice for this game. Extinct Animals focuses on prehistoric mammals and birds as opposed to dinosaurs, which is great, and I personally think that there needs to be more games and other media focusing on other extinct animals besides dinosaurs. However, they choose some of the least interesting species possible for their list, and there is a lot of representation of certain taxons. Not counting the two bonus animals, Zt2 EA is made up of 12 dinosaurs, 20 pleistocene-holocene mammals and birds, 1 permian synapsid, and 1 mesozoic croc. This game should’ve had at least 50 species realistically to cover even a fraction of the massive scope of prehistory.


    . American Mastodon - Honestly, this was one of the best animals in the game, however its appearance and needs really made it a hairy asian elephant. I think more people wanted a woolly mammoth above any other proboscidean.

    . Short-faced Bear - This species, despite being a fast moving, grassland inhabitant in reality, was shown as a polar bear on steroids. There are many unique and fascinating giant mammalian carnivores to choose from, my favorite pick being an andrewsarchus.

    . Aurochs - I like how the game focused on recently-extinct species of animals, but did we really need several. It just seems like overkill at that point. Since we’re lacking many fauna from the paleozoic, i’ll add an inostrancevia.

    . Bluebuck - Bluebuck were already going extinct before humans came to South Africa. I’d replace it with a macrauchenia for a few reasons: we get an ungulate that is from the miocene, we get an ungulate that isn't related to any other animal, we get an animal that can go into a themed mixed-exhibit with the doedicurus and megatherium already in the game.

    . Bush-Antlered Deer - If I wanted to select a prehistoric deer, why not choose a more popular Irish elk as opposed to this species?

    . Carnotaurus - This in itself is not a bad choice, but with so many prehistoric animals out there and so little space for them, I would pick a larger more famous theropod. My first choice would be a spinosaurus.

    . Cave Lion - While we’re on dinosaurs, there are no pterosaurs in the game. I know BlueFang isn’t big on flying animals, so I’d pick a quetzalcoatlus.

    . Deinosuchus - This is one of the worst animal models in the game. It looked like a living cactus. There’s a lack of marine animals in the game, and going off of pterosaurs, I would add at least one extinct sea creature. My first choice for this slot would be a mosasaurus.

    . Deinonychus - There are three dromaeosaur species in the game which in my opinion is too many for the amount of animals the creators have set in stone. Velociraptor is the only one that is needed in my opinion, and it’s also the best because it’s perhaps the most accurate looking dinosaur in the game. One group of dinosaurs that is lacking from the game are ornithopods(iguanodonts & hadrosaurs). For this slot, my first choice of ornithopod dinosaur would be an iguanodon.

    . Dwarf Sicilian Elephant - Elephants have a rich and incredible history where they came in many different forms, enough with making them standard issue. I’d choose a moeritherium as it’s one of the earliest and most uniquely looking ones.

    . Giant Warthog - Who asked for this? No one. Though no longer considered a pig, an entelodont like daeodon would’ve been a lot better than this creature.

    . Kentrosaurus - Besides ornithopods, the other major group of dinosaurs that isn’t featured in the game are the sauropods. I wouldn’t feature a brachiosaur or one of the larger titanosaur species. I’d definitely pick a sauropod like an apatosaurus due to its popularity, and that it came from the same formation as the stegosaurus already in the game so it could be mixed with them.

    . Protarchaeopteryx - BlueFang took a herbivorous, flightless oviraptorid from a temperate habitat, and made it into an exact replica of their secretary bird from AA. I can think of twenty feathered dinosaurs that would have replaced this creature. The first of these choices would be a microraptor.

    . Sivatherium - I would choose one of the more obscure or odd theropods to take its place. My top choice would be a therizinosaurus.

    . Stokesosaurus - this dinosaur has nothing to its name besides being a late jurassic era relative of tyrannosaurus. Not only that, BF made it taller than a person when it was only thirteen-feet long. I’d replace it with an allosaurus so that we get a jurassic era carnivore that is large, and it can also hunt the stegosaurus already in the game.

    . Styracosaurus - We already have triceratops in the game, another ceratopsian makes it seem like a waste of space. I’d replace it with pachycephalosaurus.

    . Giant Camel - Replace with a paraceratherium. I mean really, what else?

    . Utahraptor - I want to add one more paleozoic animal to the game, and since the zoo tycoon games in general lack land invertebrates, I’d choose an arthropleura to settle things and it’d be an incredible animal to have.

    . Warrah - Again, recently extinct animal that no one asked for, that looks exactly like a red fox in the game. I would replace it with something more unique; a leptictidium.

    . Woolly Rhinoceros - My only compliant with this one is that it has the same problem with the mastodon: exact replica of modern animal but with fur. To make it a little more unique while still technically keeping a woolly rhino, i’d replace the coelodonta with an elasmotherium.


    Bonus Animals

    . Quagga - Another recently extinct animal, I’d replace it with a prehistoric amphibian like diplocaulus.

    . Killer Penguin - I know that this animal was created just for laughs, but still, If you’re going to make an expansion pack based on extinct animals, the least that you can do is have actual animals. I’m going to split the killer penguin up and choose two seperate animals in its place: a terror bird like phorusrhacos, and an extinct sea bird like hesperornis.
     
    Last edited: 14 May 2018
  2. Zoofan15

    Zoofan15 Well-Known Member

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    I don't think I can quite do justice to such a comprehensive review @Loxodonta Cobra but I agree with at least 95% of your suggestions.

    I'd like to see either Caspian, Javan or Balinese Tigers (Maybe in place of the Cave Lion), Rothschild Giraffe (in place of the Masai or Reticulated Giraffe) and Sumatran Tiger and Siberian Tiger (in place of the Bengal Tiger). I really like the idea of replacing the Emperor Penguin with the Humboldt Penguin and would favour seeing Asian Small Clawed Otter instead of the Sea Otter. Instead of the generic Orangutan, I'd prefer they specified either Bornean or Sumatran as a sub species.

    A lot of my preferences are based on what I see in my local zoos admittedly. In New Zealand we have Galapagos Giant Tortoise and African Leopard Tortoise so these are my preferred sub species, though I'm also fond of the Leatherback Turtle (I like how the females have those pink spots) and the Green Turtles.

    I also like your idea of the Kakapo featuring in Zoo Tycoon 2. Unless there's an aviary, I can understand the reluctance of ZT/Blue Fang to include an animal which in reality would fly away, but flightless birds like Kakapo, Emu, Cassowary and the Kiwi would be awesome.
     
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  3. Hyak_II

    Hyak_II Well-Known Member

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    Jeez, just a few small nitpicks from you I see!

    Also you have heard of user made DLC, right? I distinctly feel like that would be something right up your alley and mitigate virtually ALL of your frustrations with what animals are available in game.
     
  4. PaleoMatt

    PaleoMatt Well-Known Member

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    Well luckily for you all, there is mods for pretty much every one of these animals. Do people still play Zoo Tycoon 2 without mods?
     
  5. Loxodonta Cobra

    Loxodonta Cobra Well-Known Member

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    I played the first two zoo tycoon games for ten years. I'm aware about the usage of DLC and the vast amount of it(There's a whole wiki about downloadable content for zt2). This thread is about what animals you would change in the original game without any downloads. Also, I had stopped playing the game years ago after I downloaded so much content for it that my computer died on me.
     
  6. Okapipako

    Okapipako Well-Known Member

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    You did a great job picking a more solid and representative selection, and rectifying many of BlueFang's head-scratching choices. They were a bit more credible here than in ZT1 but one definitely gets the impression most decisions were made with the help of skimming through a bargain bin children's encyclopedia. (As already mentioned though, yes, ZT2 is practically a different game entirely with the mod community's content!) The lack of flying animals always perplexed me, too. I don't think aviaries, netting etc would have been too hard to program even in the early 2000s.

    I do think you waver a little on your reasoning, though, as far as realism vs. fantasy goes. Swapping out emperor penguins and narwhals with more likely IRL but less iconic alternatives, while adding humpbacks, for example (although I'm with you in diversifying and fixing overabundances of certain groups). I think it's fine to have a balance of realism and fantasy, especially in a game meant to let imaginations run wild.

    Regardless this was fun. I agree with most of your choices so not sure how much I'd do differently. Makes me wonder what choices a ZooChat-designed simulator would go with ^^
     
  7. BigNate

    BigNate Well-Known Member

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    I don't use mods:cool:
     
  8. PaleoMatt

    PaleoMatt Well-Known Member

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    Why not? It is 900 times better with mods. You have more species, you can build your own structures, there are endless possibilities.
     
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  9. BigNate

    BigNate Well-Known Member

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    I don't really know why. It's partly because I didn't know how to set it up, and the fact I've been fine with the current basic game, even addicted to it, since i got it 10+ years ago
     
  10. JVM

    JVM Well-Known Member

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    Most of the animals people tend to criticize were chosen due to the issues with animations. more than anyone else. I think in many cases, Blue Fang simply had the budget for say, fifteen animals, and used duplicated animations to make up the remaining number to twenty. In particular, I'm pretty sure this is how Extinct Animals came out the way it did. Instead of wondering why they didn't select an animal that would take more work, if you look at those reused animals as a bonus or nothing, then most of those choices become reasonable.... there are one or two I'd call wholly unnecessary though.

    I would have much sooner preferred additional expansions to altering the existing ones. I would much rather have had a complete bird/aviary system in a new pack, for example... the only exception is I wish they had taken more time to add more content to MM. Not cutting existing species, just expanding it outward. Consider MM being pushed back for another ES/AA-type expansion first, and then coming out later with say, 30 species, closer to EA's number.

    On my first read through, I overlooked you adding this species to the base game and was wracking my brain for why you would replace the only canid with a parrot!

    This is only a theory, but to this day that half of ES' roster was probably stuff intended for ZT2 but couldn't finish in time, and then simply released with the first expansion, i.e. the bison and wolf. I confess a part of me sometimes wishes they had waited a year and released ZT2 + ES as the base game, but I doubt the budgeting department saw it that way.

    (FYI, I bought Zoo Tycoon 2 the day it was released, and still have a lot of nostalgia for the base game. I have separate installations for a mostly vanilla version, one with a lot of older school mods, and a more mod-heavy version. Many of the modern realistic designs look downright awkward next to classic stuff. Sadly, some species only exist in one style or the other. I also used to mod, and wish I still had the time.)
     
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  11. PaleoMatt

    PaleoMatt Well-Known Member

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    It is super easy. Download a mod, then drop the .z2f file into your Zoo Tycoon 2 folder. Done.
     
  12. TheMightyOrca

    TheMightyOrca Well-Known Member

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    I like fennec foxes, but yeah, I didn't get why it was included in the Endangered Species pack. Would have been fitting for the Africa one.

    I agree that there should have been more cetacean diversity. I'd replace the pilot whale and the false killer whale with a harbor porpoise and some kind of baleen whale. I guess a minke whale, since they're small enough for their captivity to be more plausible.

    Aquatic animals in general, really, I think that the base game should include aquariums and a selection of basic/common aquatic species like California sea lion and bottlenose dolphin. Use the Marine Mania to add more. In addition, making aquariums a default feature would allow other expansion packs to add aquatic animals. Extinct Animals could have icthyosaurs and plesiosaurs, and Endangered Animals could add South Asian river dolphins and Hawaiian monk seals.

    Masai giraffe was unnecessary.
     
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  13. evilmonkey239

    evilmonkey239 Well-Known Member

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    Yeah I’ve always been perplexed why the short-faced bear had tank building and ice floes on its zookeeper recommendations when there’s no indication from its fossil remains that it was particularly aquatic. It being an altered polar bear helps explain this.
     
  14. evilmonkey239

    evilmonkey239 Well-Known Member

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    Personally, I think replacing the emperor penguin with a king penguin makes more sense than trading it in for a humboldt. Kings look similar to emperors and also live in cold climates; however their natural habitat isn’t quite as extreme that of their as their larger cousin, and as such they’re far more common in captivity.
    Also, I don’t see any problems with keeping the Asian black bear; while it’s true their American counterpart is a lot more numerous in US zoos (as well as in their natural habitat, coincidentally), they aren’t completely nonexistent, and a few of the other new animals you suggested, like the saiga are also hard to come by, if not impossible to find in this part of the world.
     
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  15. JVM

    JVM Well-Known Member

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    I think one of the interesting but very subjective things in these conversations is the line between selecting charismatic species that don't exist in captivity for educational value and fantasy purposes versus realistic but not necessarily interesting species common in zoos. Should we drop species like Narwhal because they can't be kept in captivity, or include them for fun and educational purposes? How about Manta rays, which have very rarely been held? etc. The only examples that have tended to feel truly odd to me are those where a well-known species held in captivity was overlooked for a similar non-captive species; such as with the Mountain Gorilla selection.

    I like the Asiatic Black Bear, and I think part of why it was such an obscure factoid for ZT2 at first was indeed that Blue Fang probably figured people wouldn't mind missing out on another bear. :p