I had not been to the Seneca Park Zoo here in Rochester for probably 30 plus years even as much as I like zoos in general. It has changed incredibly from those days. Going to zoos now is so different from years ago when the animals were in very cramped quarters with very little landscaping. Now in many zoos, it is hard to even spot the animals (which gives you a more natural feel for sure) as there are lots of plants and landscape elements so that critters can find shade, shelter and a break from prying eyes and crying babies. The Seneca Park Zoo was designed by the famous Frederick Law Olmsted who also designed Maplewood Park and Highland Park here in Rochester as well as Central Park in NYC. Much of the character of this naturalistic design is still present and even though the temps were in the high 80s, it was very shady and pleasant with a nice breeze. The zoo sits right next to the Genesee River and is part of Seneca Park, from which it derives its name.
This is another tiger view just for Priscilla who loves her tigers. All the animals in the zoo looked very well cared for and content with shiny coats and sleek bodies. The hyenas certainly looked better fed than they did in the wild!
There are two female lions and one male lion at the zoo and they are fairly new occupants. They are all very young (around two) and we did eventually see all three of them although everyone was seeking shade today.
Even the cougar posed for me today -- she had also just finished her noontime meal.
And of course the beautiful snow leopard from Asia with the very long tail and huge paws (like snowshoes I guess). They were cooling themselves off in a spray mist that was going.
Not to be missed were these two absolutely beautiful American Bald Eagles who unfortunately had each had a wing broken in the wild. They seem to be thriving here and had beautiful markings.
Even the Snow Owl was out today and just beautiful. From what I read while south, there was a huge influx of these birds into the northeast this past winter. I have never seen one in the wild but Warren had many times when we lived in Batavia and he drove to Niagara Falls every day. I do love the raptors.
I couldn't help but take a picture of this absolutely stunning stained glass window that was the size of a full door. Outside of Tiffany windows, it was one of the most striking I have seen. It was on the exit from the building that housed snakes, birds and some of the other more tropical species. This was looking out from the inside. I will have to find out who did this! (Note: It was done by Mr. Peter McGrain.)
After our trip, we headed to Joe's Crab Shack for lunch. What a fun place and practically empty on a holiday (everyone barbecuing we figured). The food was absolutely excellent. This is a chain restaurant we hadn't been to before and is relatively new to the Rochester area.