Sunday, March 30, 2008

Old MacDonald had a Wildlife Park


Cotswold Wildlife Park has all sorts of animals that are alien to the British countryside. As I have posted about recently it is not often you will see a rhino and zebra in front of an old English mansion, or hear lions roaring while walking around a lake full of ducks, geese and swans, but this is all part of it's particular charm. However, there are some more familiar residents at the park which are not so 'wild'. In fact they are rather domesticated as the park has a corner full of farm animals.


In a barn full of animals in comfy straw lined pens I found a simply huge pig snoozing noisily. Piggy was far more interested in napping than saying hello so after taking her photo I moved on to the bunnies. We think of rabbits as being small and cuddly creatures but these seemed huge. I had to wonder what on earth they were feeding these animals but I recall the rabbit our family had when I was a child. It was called Harvey after the rabbit in the film as he was white. He was meant to be a dwarf rabbit but grew to the size of a donkey with a kick to match! (Okay, not really but he was bigger than quite a few dogs!). Turned out his name was apt as he also turned out to be a giant rabbit as well. The rabbits in the park regarded me with the suspicion that prey animals reserve for anything bigger than them with teeth but sat still for photos save the twitching of their noses.


Back outside I found the goats, together with their kids. One particular kid was obviously testing his boundaries and trying to discover if goats can climb. He was quite thorough in his testing, trying again and again to shimmy up the fence post, but despite actually getting three legs off the ground he had to admit that cloven hooves aren't the best for gripping vertical surfaces, though I recorded his endeavours for posterity.

Afterwards I made my way to a small paddock full of goats that you could walk in and pet. Despite all this free attention the goats seemed far more engrossed in eating the spring grass and acted like the people walking amongst them were invisible, apart for moments when a small errant child tried to mount one like a pony. The goat simply walked off leaving the child hopping on the spot with his leg cocked in the air and didn't break it's feeding momentum for a moment. It was quite comical to watch but I guess you had to be there.


The farm corner of the park was extremely sweet and obviously aimed at children as most of the animals were hand tame and could be petted. There were also sheep, chickens, a couple of ponies and some guinea pigs there. I loitered for awhile but then a sign for the reptile house caught my eye and I knew where I wanted to go next. So that is what I did.

14 comments:

R. Sherman said...

The reptile house, followed by the Gorilla enclosure are the top two on my list of zoo sites to see.

Cheers.

kenju said...

I love seeing baby animals, especially in petting zoos. We haven't had one around here in ages. A kid tried to eat my purse once, and my shoes...LOL
Those rabbits are huge!

Fizzy said...

HAve you seen the size of those rabbits!!!! HUGE!
Now about these 'ere ducks I hope the rhino did not step on any

Linda said...

as a member of the MacDonald Clan, I don't know if I should laugh or be angry (we DO get teased a lot about our last name!).

I LOVE that bunny....

Dianne said...

I love the picture of the kid trying to climb. So sweet.

Mar said...

This is a wonderful time to go to the zoo because of the baby animals! I have never seen giant rabbits! I am not sure about visiting the reptile house...!!

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

These animals are so very dear....! I Love that they have a "farm" section,,,,,Anikals like this were rarely if ever in any kind of Zoo or Wildlife Park....I just love that you got these wonderful pictures, Dear B-K....
Looking forward to the next post!

Smiler said...

The are great shots. The pig is so interesting looking and those bunnies are simply obese, poor things! Are they feeding them junk food??
Love the shot of the kid too, so sweet!
Can you tell I'm a sucker for animals? Any animals? But not bugs, yech! :-)

Shephard said...

The baby goat is adorable.
I would name him Gruffy.
~S :)

Melody said...

*awwww* sooooo cute!!

Claire said...

I love Cotswold Wildlife Park, my parents used to take us when we were children, I haven't been back as an adult but after seeing these photo's I'm tempted to take a trip!
Thanks for stopping by my new home in the blogging world! Hopefully I'll find more of the blogging friends I've lost during my break soon!!

Dak-Ind said...

how wonderfully sweet and fun, and i must admit, none of my friends would get the Harvey reference but i sure did. Jimmy Stuart and his pooka.

i love the bunnies, and i appreciate the smile you gave me just now.

michele sends her love :)

becky68 said...

Oh what cool pictures! I sometimes miss seeing animals like that, now that my kids are 'too old' (or so they tell me) for that type of petting zoo sort of thing.
Thank you for stopping by my blog earlier via Michele's.

rashbre said...

....and looking forward to the reptile pix :-)