Taronga's Textured Treasures

10 July 2011
A group of four of us spent the day yesterday at the Taronga Zoo. As a tourist in Sydney, I highly suggest setting the zoo as a priority on your exploration to do list.  (You’ll wince slightly at the steep price, but from a notoriously cheap, Jewish girl's perspective: it's by far worth it! If applicable, just bring your student ID for a concession price.) 

It was the hippo’s rubbery, seemingly dried yet realistically scaly, textured skin that gripped me. I had been so focused on trying to get a view of the hippo’s face (the hippo was conveniently grazing on a patch of grass, providing viewers with a tasteful view of its behind), that it took me a few minutes to notice the skin.

I’ve spent each of my weekends admiring the range of animals (aka obsessing over the kangaroos and koalas) that Australia has to offer. But I’ve never taken the time, or even thought of taking the time, to truly appreciate the unique qualities of each species. It's easy to post pictures of the animals I saw. But what about the patterns, what about the skin, the texture, the fur that makes up the treasured critters of the famous zoo I spent my Saturday afternoon exploring? As is the case with everyday life, it’s easy to take in the big picture and miss the small details within. I've been given the opportunity to spend my summer in Sydney, Australia and with four weeks of my trip left, there's really no time to gloss over the minute details of this foreign country. I have the zoo’s hippo to thank for my change in yesterday's mindset. 

Your challenge: can you match up each picture to the correct animal?
Need a hint? There's a kangaroo, koala, hippo, red kangaroo, wallaby, (some sort of) bird and (by the far the hardest one yet...) a giraffe.

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