Monday, October 13, 2008

Hunting the Florida Skunk Ape

As most of you know, I work stupid hours and I get very little time to do fun things. It's the price you have to pay when you want to do the big fun things (like international travel). But I decided to do something fun and exciting this weekend and knock off one of my Weird Florida attractions. I figured it was about time to go check out the Skunk Ape research facility. I didn't get to see any skunk apes, but I bought a corny video (it was so corny my friends and I were forced to watch it twice as it was too much mocking for a single viewing) and a t-shirt. The mythology of the skunk ape is somewhat intriguing, but the video was not a great supporter of the cause. However, I believe it may turn into a standard watch.

Besides the skunk ape, they have a small petting zoo in the back. The guy that gave the tour was very knowledgable and I very much enjoyed my conversations with him.
I've seen people hand feed animals before but this is the first time I've seen a person mouth feed an animal. Oddly, this is the way this parrot prefers to get his cashews. If you'll notice in this picture, the parrots cheeks are a little pink. Apparently he only does that when there is a girl around. He's a big flirt and reacts immediately when there is a girl in the vicinity, regardless of the species of the girl.

I'm not experienced with birds much but he was a perfect gentleman and fluffed his feathers and would occasionally impress me with his limited vocabulary. It took about 5 minutes for this big bird to get overly heavy, but I very much enjoyed the experience.

This bird was the most affection bird I've ever seen. I didn't realize that birds like to cuddle! He curled right up into me and lifted his wings so he could get petted. He was the sweetest bird ever. If I had the time and energy, I'd be tempted to get one of these types of birds. He was very impressive.

I also got to hold this 3 year old gator. He was about 12 pounds and very docile. I got a rubber band around the nose just incase though, lol. It was still kind of fun to hold up an alligator.

There were a lot of snakes there also. I decided I didn't want to pet these though. Although my guide brought out quite a few for me to get a closer look at. The bunch he's holding in his hand below are all the same type of snake but they are different colors. Together it looks very cool.

While visiting Ochopee, I thought I'd make another quick stop at a famous landmark - the worlds smallest post office. It's still up and active, but considering Ochopee has a population of 11 (at least according to my Skunk Ape DVD) I suspect it works just fine.


kenan and tree said...

Nice pictures. i love how you set your blogs up with the little pictures, and writing around them. i'm the queen of big pictures..and only a little bit of writing. lol.

Redd Family History said...

Glad you were able to get to the home of the "Skunk Ape". Keep working on that Weird Florida book. You'll get all the spots visited eventually!