With the death of Conrad, a male polar bear, I was reminded of all of the animal deaths I’ve known of since starting to go to the Oregon Zoo nearly 10 years ago. I know the collection of animal photographs I’ve taken before their passing is not a complete list. Tusko, a male Indian elephant and father to many of the herd, left us after suffering for years with a bad leg. Since I can’t confirm that any of my photos of that herd contained one of Tusko I left him out.
Zoo populations, just like humans, get old, sick, frail.Certain animals have shorter lifespans than us. Personally I don’t think the powers in charge of the Oregon Zoo did a good job introduce younger animals into their population. They have become known as a geriatric zoo, with a number of their animals touted to be the oldest individuals in captivity.
So here’s to Conrad, Lucifer, Kutai, Tusko, Gus, Ralph, Citation and Nicole (Nikki). Here’s a tribute to all of them for providing us with years of enjoyment.