Thursday, March 27, 2008

Behold the hippopotamus

In addition to bleating "It's been in our master plan for 20 years" every time we squeeze 'em, our fine furry friends at the Memphis Zoo say they were not trying to surprise anyone with the clearcut for Teton Wreck. After all, they did put up signs announcing it.

But the sign also announces the Zambezi River Hippo Camp and lacks a map of either exhibit, so I failed to observe a connection between the location of this sign and the brutal clearcut that was about to happen behind that green fence.

If the above sign was intended to mark the location of Teton Dreck, I'm really starting to wonder what the Memphis Zoo is trying to communicate by the placement of this identical sign:

It's within sight of the panda gift shop and carousel, and that wall is the backside of the Primate Canyon exhibit. Does this location make any sense?

Can we expect Hippopotamus vs. Orangutan All-Star Wrestling in the spring of 2010? Or maybe a happy little ungulate/primate commune in which the siamangs take over the treetops while the hippos and crocs prowl Lick Creek, dreaming of sloppy okapi for lunch? I'm so confused.

Here are the two Teton/Zambezi signs glommed on top of a Memphis Zoo map, so you can see their locations for yourself:

The Memphis Zoo says they plan to take a break from clearcutting and redevelop existing exhibits for the Zambezi River project, instead, but it sure would be nice if they had a public map to prove it.

Note: This is the easternmost third of the official Memphis Zoo map. This is the only map available to visitors. Where is Teton Trek, you ask? Out there, where the map ends and unicorns frolic with leprechauns in fountains of champagne.


jccvi said...

It seems like I heard the hippo exhibit is going in the same place as the current one.

bridgmanpottery said...

I was driving West on Poplar past East Parkway yesterday and saw bulldozers WAY close to the road, right at the corner of OP at E. Parkway. Do you know what that is about? Golf course expansion? Will there be any trees left in Overton Park at all?

Naomi, you're right, the zoo pro'ly won't even take your money when it's time for you to renew!

Anonymous said...

Pure lunacy

Naomi Van Tol said...

jccvi - That would be great, but I don't think the current hippo area has enough space for a hippo exhibit, croc exhibit, upland okapi exhibit, tidal flats for the flamingos, treetop classroom, et cetera.

bridgmanpottery - You saw the bulldozers inside the City of Memphis maintenance area. They have steadily whittled away at that corner of the forest over the past ten years or so. I think the zoo will take my money; they'll need it to pay for Zambezi, fo sheezy.

anonymous - I know! Leprechauns and unicorns normally HATE each other! But there you have it.