It’s school holidays, so I took the strangelings to Adelaide Zoo today, to see the giant pandas. Given our planned departure at the end of the year, I thought that I ought to make the effort to get to see the pandas, much touted as the only pandas in the southern hemisphere. Whatever.
There’s been some discussion about some pandas being sent to do a stretch in a zoo in New Zealand, and Wellington Zoo seems to be lining itself up for the job. I wouldn’t. Based on what we saw today, they are deeply boring animals, who are only revered because they benefit from small cute furry animal syndrome. “Oh, it’s so cute! We must save it!” But really, all they do is eat…
(Description: short clip of giant panda leaning back and chewing bamboo.)
… and sleep …
(Description: Giant panda sprawled over rock, asleep. My apologies for the poor picture quality: the shot was taken through a window.)
(Description: panda poop, looking like nothing so much as hay matted together with cow poo, with a few large chunks of undigested bamboo through it.)
Deadly dull. However I suspect that they would be even more deadly dull had we stood in line for half-an-hour before getting in to see them. Adelaide Zoo does not charge extra to see the pandas, but it does ration space in the enclosure, and you need to book a time slot. We arrived at the zoo just 10 minutes or so after it opened, and walked straight in to see the pandas. By the time we left at 2pm, the queue was several hundred metres long, wending Disney-style past other displays to alleviate boredom, but no doubt still tedious. Should you be planning to go to Adelaide Zoo to see the pandas, I recommend an early start.