last thursday i headed back to dortmund zoo with my dad and his girlfriend with the intention of visiting the sloths at feeding time, and it didn't disappoint. when we arrived, julius the sloth was already running rings around the enclosure's hanging branches, and the place soon flooded with eager children ready to listen and learn about the wonderful sloth! apart from a couple of numbers and the fact that sloths have very long hair, i didn't really catch much of what the zookeeper was telling us all about, but after a brief chat with my dad's girlfriend afterwards it turned out he'd educated them about what i already know – not bad eh? i could totally be a sloth keeper...
the sloths share the enclosure with some of their closest relatives; the anteater, armadillo and tamandua; and i was lucky enough to witness the utterly adorable situation that is a sleeping anteater wrapped up in its own tail. have you honestly ever seen anything as adorable before? because i know i certainly hadn't! my gosh, it made me smile.
of course a baby rhino required photographing - capybara are damn cute - sloths have a bad reputation for being lazy and boring but big cats are never any more active at zoos!
a walk through bird cage meant i got up close and personal with some owls - we caught the orangutans at feeding time! - this iguana was completely chilled out - there were peacocks roaming openly around us in the zoo!
the emperor tamarin monkeys were so cheeky and adorable coming right up to the cage! - the red pandas were distant, but forgiven because look at them
i thought i'd finish up with a photo of julius who was pooped after a very exciting feeding time! after finishing up his grub he zonked out in the very spot where he'd just stuffed his face – what. a. cutie!! i've thoroughly enjoyed both of my trips to dortmund zoo because there's such a calm, relaxed atmosphere throughout the zoo, and you're really given the chance to get fairly close to a lot of the animals, at least in comparison to british zoos, anyway. of course julius the sloth helps to contribute greatly to my experience of the zoo, but we all know i'm a huge fan of trips to the zoo anyway because i love getting the chance to observe animals and the ways they think, act and move because it's so, so fascinating – i always come away from zoos feeling uplifted and inspired, which can only be a good thing!