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Walk in the Wilderness or Visit to a Zoo

Discussion in 'General Zoo Discussion' started by Nikola Chavkosk, 27 Sep 2016.

  1. Nikola Chavkosk

    Nikola Chavkosk Well-Known Member

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    I find that walking in the wilderness is not essential for me as animal lover; If I attend travel abroad for tourist reasons, that would primarly be for visiting a zoo or for holiday on sea (I don't like either too much visiting historic places like churches, monuments etc.).

    Although it is very relaxing, to walk in a mountain or maybe to attend a safari in Africa, I find that those things are not essential for me, and I will not worry if I lack them (on a regular basis), with other words I don't need such walks.

    What you are enjoying more (or what is more essential for you):

    -Visiting zoos
    or
    -Walking/driving in the wilderness, like in mountains (mountaineering), including attending safaris (like in Africa) or organised trips in tropical forests?
     
  2. MikeG

    MikeG Well-Known Member

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    Well, here in the Wigan area we don't have a lot of 'wilderness'...though it can be amusing to watch the local populations of Homo erectus as they go about their daily business.
    "Organised trips in tropical forests?" No thanks:- too hot, too humid, too many leeches/flies/ticks, too great a risk of contracting some underpants-shattering bowel disorder, and so hard to find a decent gingerbread latte when you feel like one.
    Zoos every time, baby! :D
     
    Last edited: 27 Sep 2016
  3. LaughingDove

    LaughingDove Well-Known Member

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    For me, it very much depends on which zoo and which wilderness!

    I am just as interested in birding as zoo visiting, so I couldn't say I would definitely choose one over the other.

    However I would say that if I was given $5000 for a trip (totally hypothetical of course, unless anyone fancies sponsoring my next trip? :p), I would go birding rather than zoo visiting if I had to choose one or the other. In reality though, I would combine both!
     
  4. overread

    overread Well-Known Member

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    I think if you want to see certain animals then a zoo might be the only practical approach as in many cases there are animals in the wild that even experts might only see on trail-cameras or the evidence of activity and not direct sightings. Especially those that live in very dense areas and thus you cannot "sneak up" upon them without them being aware of you being around.

    That said i think seeing something in the wild is more prized or special in feeling to most because it is an achievement and rarity to actually SEE that; whilst in a zoo its more a matter of just showing up at the right time (that keepers will generally know anyway) and you'll see the animal, even the more elusive.

    However if one isn't fortunate to have wilderness experience or access then a guide or specific trip can be essential; otherwise one might find a zoo more pleasing for a cheaper and more personal trip where you don't need a guide etc.. .to see things.
     
  5. wensleydale

    wensleydale Well-Known Member

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    How do you define wilderness?

    I am out in the woods at least once a week, as well as being someone who regularly exercises outdoors. Given that the nearest Zoo to me (Southwick's, that reminds me I need to go there soon) is an hour away I tend lean towards going to see stuff in situ for no other reason than it's whats most convenient. Currently Africa is financially inaccessible to me, so alas for exotic animals I need to go to the zoo.
     
  6. Nikola Chavkosk

    Nikola Chavkosk Well-Known Member

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    Definitely not a park in a city or grass- or tree- covered place in the city periphery, but more distant place from human settlement like mountain (mountain road coneceted with city), lowland forest, wetland, valley...
     
  7. Hix

    Hix Wildlife Enthusiast and Lover of Islands Premium Member

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    For the first 40 odd years of my life it was visiting zoos - that was almost the only thing I was interested in. In 1984 I went on a trip to Europe and saw 17 zoos in 4 weeks (some of the zoos I visited twice) in the UK, Belgium, Holland, Germany and Switzerland. Although I spent a few hours in Lichtenstein (just so I could say I've been there) I didn't visit any wilderness areas.

    When I turned 40 I decided it was time to see some wildlife in the wild, while there was still a 'wild' left. And in the last six years or so, I haven't even considered zoos when planning holidays, although if a zoo or wildlife park is available I will still visit.

    Seeing an animal behind glass, through bars, or across a moat is one experience, but for me seeing an animal in the wild is a completely different and more rewarding experience. I have found that nothing compares to standing 25 metres from a herd of elephants ripping trees apart, walking through a forest with troop of chimpanzees only a few metres away, or swimming with wild dolphins or humpback whales and their calves.

    As for "underpants-shattering bowel disorders", you don't look forward to them but they're all part of the experience. And staying at home doesn't guarantee you won't get one at some point anyway.

    As a friend of mine once said "If you're not living on the edge, you're taking up too much space".

    My next holiday will incorporate both wilderness areas and world-class zoos. Both will be enjoyable, but each experience will be very different.

    :p

    Hix
     
    Last edited: 30 Sep 2016
  8. Nikola Chavkosk

    Nikola Chavkosk Well-Known Member

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    Thank you Hix for this very interesting post!
     
  9. Kakapo

    Kakapo Well-Known Member

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    With no doubt, first for me is visit to a zoo (unless is a poor and small zoo). In a zoo I can photograph much more diversity of species and will have no problem trying to identify them as they're already labelled. However, my preference for a zoo doesn't mean that I don't enjoy also a lot during a trip in the wilderness. Mainly because in the wild I can photograph many species that are never represented at zoos (mainly insects).
     
  10. Chlidonias

    Chlidonias Moderator Staff Member

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    I like that. One of my favourites is a lot more wordy, but basically says the same thing:

    "The proper function of man is to live, not to exist. I shall not waste my days in trying to prolong them. I shall use my time." - Jack London
     
  11. TheMightyOrca

    TheMightyOrca Well-Known Member

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    While I do love love love zoos, all factors being equal (it could vary depending on the zoo or the wilderness) I'd probably pick wilderness. Seeing an animal in the wild is a more special and exciting experience. Unfortunately for me, I haven't been able to afford many wilderness outings. (though I'm planning a trip for next summer) Hopefully I'll get a park ranger job soon.
     
  12. Hvedekorn

    Hvedekorn Well-Known Member

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    If Homo erectus still exists in your home area, I would certainly love to go there - seeing other species of human than sapiens would be a life-time treat. :p

    That aside, as much as I love going to zoos, I generally like seeing animals in their natural habitat more. Of course, there are exceptions, given how some animals are much easier to observe in captivity, but I'm actually not that keen on zoos keeping mostly/only local species, unless it's for conservation purposes or if it's species that are nigh-impossible to see in nature. Then I'd rather see a zoo that keeps exotics and at the same time has exhibitions on local wildlife and maybe arranges nature trips.
     
  13. MikeG

    MikeG Well-Known Member

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    Clearly you have never been to Wigan.
    It is not a place to which the word 'treat' can be applied.
    The word 'threat', however, is a different matter....
     
  14. TeaLovingDave

    TeaLovingDave Moderator Staff Member

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    Certainly you would be in risk of ending your lifetime!
     
  15. baboon

    baboon Well-Known Member

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    My home is just 10 minutes walk from a huge zoo, I like watching animals relaxedly in the safe and comfortable environment of the zoo, but I still spend one third of my time searching wild animals in the wilderness. In most parts of my country, the large animals are very hard to see and the most abundant animal species you will come across are leechs, ticks and mosquitos; but the feeling of coming across a real wild mammal eye-to-eye in the forest after all the struggles and sufferings is fantastic and magic, even if the animal will flee in one second. And fortunately there are also vast pristine wilderness in my country where large herds of wildlife still roam freely and unafraid of human beings. Not to mention most species cannot be seen in any zoos of the world.
     
  16. Merintia

    Merintia Well-Known Member

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    For me, living on a rural area and almost four hours by road from the closer zoo, usually I enjoy more my few visits to zoos, in part because are special occasions for me. Also, wilderness can be pretty frustrating on look for animals (not to mention photography) so zoos are a great way to satisfy that hobby. But I also enjoy a lot my frequent day-trips to the mountain, even if I´m not lucky with animals, just to be far from people and noise (something that is difficult to find at a zoo unless you can go on working days) is a joy for me.
     
  17. TheMightyOrca

    TheMightyOrca Well-Known Member

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    I prefer the wilderness trip, sure, there's often a small chance you'll see the animal you're looking for, but that makes any sightings all the more special. Alas, I don't have a lot of money, so I don't get to take many wilderness trips, ha ha.