Christmas 2014

Prep started yesterday:

  1. find the head lamp
  2. make sure camera is working
  3. review all logbook tasks and talk to the Keepers about any questions
  4. make sure tasty food is on my desk
  5. set alarm for 5 AMxmas 3 logbooks

    treatments readied with notes
    treatments readied with notes

I arrived on grounds around 5:15. As usual, I gathered up logbooks. Also as usual, Katy has set up treatments for me (thanks Katy). I flounder a bit getting started, but no real issues. I remembered that Blue Jay SCREAMS at the sight of headlamps.  I was doing great walking backwards whenever I walked by the Holding Room (that is until at 6:20 I went to get filtered water for the toad and faced the wrong way. About 3 straight minutes of LOUDNESS from our corvid.

Filou climbed up to bed after eating
Filou climbed up to bed after eating

By 6:30 I  had made good progress and had checked on all the indoor animals. I only had to dig out one snake – (Sam, the black rat snake) as everyone else was easy to spot. The water snake was really active in his tank- I’ve never seen so much swimming back and forth. Filou opossum is up and ready to eat (but quickly goes to bed after eating). His exhibit was easy to clean, but super smelly from a super large fresh poop (sorry, no photo).




The ferrets take their Furotone easily. I sat each one in my lap and did a good job keeping the oil off my clean shirt and only getting it on my dirty “bear-pool-pants”.

The Salamanders are out and actually moving, as was the toad, and a bunch of turtles. Bugsy was alert and doing things too. Things that I won’t say (- things that rhyme with “bumping” or “jumping” or “lumping” but none of those things).

Gordon is also easy to spot:

Gordon our crested gecko
Gordon our crested gecko

I only had one problem with the food dishes as I looked long and hard trying to figure out whose dish of food this was:

xmas 4 dish

I was very disappointed it took me as long as it did. I knew Chicken’s food dish had changed but I was still surprised.

Chicken "chatting" with the ferrets, Betsy, Abraham, and Martha.
Chicken “chatting” with the ferrets, Betsy, Abraham, and Martha.

At 7:30 former volunteer Karyn arrived. She was free and with Donald having a relaxing Christmas at home I welcomed the company and support.

We grabbed everything for outdoors (or at least I thought we did).


Nice back Virginia
Nice back Virginia

First stop bear cliff. Yona slowly took her meds, but easily (in syrup). Virginia snoozed on the opposite end of the cliff from Yona, but sat up as we left.

Next stop, the bear house, where Gus is snoozing on one side of the house and Mimi on the other. No chasing them out of the house today as they have the day off from “working”.  So, we turn off the light and move on to the wolf exhibit to toss in their food.

On to lemurs.


Pretty straightforward here too, except I am used to just going and cleaning up for the new lemurs, but today I get to go take care of our old guys. We have five “old” lemurs, and, when you add their ages all together it adds up to 114 years! Our five newest lemurs –  the ring-tailed lemurs from Toledo- total age is 11 years when added together. (anyone want to guess all their ages?)

I think this was Jethys coming down to eat browse when I left.
I think this was Jethys coming down to eat browse when I left.


Sorry boys, you'll have to wait. (I did toss them honeysuckle to eat while waiting)
Sorry boys, you’ll have to wait. (I did toss them honeysuckle to eat while waiting)


The Farmyard is the last stop (although everyone was checked on earlier). Karyn really did all the work here- YAY FOR KARYN. karynchristmas


I more or less wandered around trying to remember who got fed what meds and what food and…let Karyn do all the work.


Miss Piggy got out (purposefully!) I let her have first dibs at the chow and get some wandering time.

xmas piggy







Possibly one of the cooler things I found was the pellet in the great horned owl cage. IT WAS SO BIG I just had to take it and get a photo for you:

a 4" long owl pellet
a 4″ long owl pellet


Biggest surprises of the morning:

  1. My cat did not wake up when I left home

    My cat Scout
    My cat Scout
  2. The Cleaning Crew showed up to work. I’ve worked 22 Christmas days at the Museum and have never seen them here.
  3. Mimi did not yell at me!!
  4. I only lost beets (I had bought beets yesterday and set them somewhere)




Actually, the biggest surprise of the morning is I really did get to put my feet up on my desk! (Thank goodness for the writing of this blog post).

Merry Christmas everyone and enjoy the rest of the day.

favorite xmas shot 001

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