Although it would have been nice to have seen the Golden-handed Tamarin I showed in my last post in its natural habitat of South America, I truly got a kick out of seeing it and other amazing creatures while at the Dallas World Aquarium last week.
It's not only an aquarium but a combination of several open aviaries, rain forests, and tanks. I have mixed emotions when it comes to zoos and such but have to say the DWA is a remarkably well-maintained facility and the animals and birds appeared to be healthy and happy.
I do not use flash when I take nature photos and didn't even think to ask the staff if I could. In hindsight I think it would have been OK to do so (and the quality of my photos would probably have been a lot better if I had used flash since we were indoors) but overall I'm pretty happy with how my pics turned out and hope you get a feel of how extraordinary the creatures were.
Matschie's Tree Kangaroo:
Mystery bird I'll have to spend time looking up but it might have been a female yellow-headed or Red-capped Manakin:
Another mystery bird:
White-faced Saki Monkeys:
Sleeping Three-toed Sloth:
Emperor Tamarin (I tried to get pics of their faces but they moved so fast!):
A few of the Spoonbills made their way to the rafters:
Golden-handed Tamarin having a scratch:
Turned to the other side to scratch its other leg:
Saki Monkeys (male on the left, female on the right):
The two monkeys above resumed preening each other a second after that photo was taken.
Golden Lion Tamarin:
A diver swam amongst the creatures, collecting their food rubbish and otherwise checking on things. Arapaima fish are seen on the right:
Three of the penguins were pretty sleepy as quiet classical music was being pumped through speakers overhead:
I was pretty taken with this little snoozer:
The middle and right-hand penguins were sleepy too:
Bonnethead shark (bird perched above it on the edge of the rock):
Guiana Crested Eagle (at first I thought it was a Harpy Eagle):
Puerto Rican Woodpecker:
We also visited Arbor Hills Nature Preserve, a public park located in Plano, Texas.
Bigger squirrels than we have up north:
A Dark Morph Red-tail hunted low above the open fields:
very likely a Hook-billed Kite a very difficult bird to identify:
At first a friend and I wondered if it may be a Hook-billed Kite but now think it could have been a Sharp-shinned Hawk:
A stretch of power lines and open pathway on another side of town:
Starlings on the wires:
Starling right after lift-off: