Tuesday, September 18, 2012

This and That. Critter Central

We spent Sunday at the annual  Harvest Festival in Hughson.  Fun times.  There was all the usual festival stuff and vendors and food and rides but the Cruzin' Critters display was really outstanding.

This is George, the Burmese Python.   George is 60 lbs, which actually surprised me.  I thought he would weigh much more.
The Gentleman to the right was very intrigued by George and approached with great caution.  It took a moment but then he bravely reached out and touched him.  He got nervous again and left but then he returned.  George lured him back for another try.  This time I got a picture of George and his new friend.  George is cool and soft.  His belly is so smooth, it felt like silk.  I've been around a few snakes but George was the biggest ever.  Way cool.

This is Paco the Iguana.  I was surprised at how rough his hide was.  Not only is he fast, but the rough hide must be an adaptation to living in a desert environment and the myriad harsh encounters he would have living as a ground dweller, rock climber, and cactus burrower.  Paco and Don are checking each other out but Don was warned that Paco's tongue could do some damage so he kept a healthy distance back.

Sadly, I didn't get this alligator's name but he was so exciting to see.  He was about 4 feet long from nose tip to tail tip.  He was found in the American River somewhere in the delta.  He had probably been tossed  there by someone who had him as a cute little baby and then when the baby was too big, got dumped in the delta.  Once  HE got big enough to be noticed by the fishing and swimming locals, wildlife management stepped in.  Now he lives in Turlock thrilling folks like me.  Like the python, I was amazed at how soft his underbelly was.  He was cool and hard but didn't feel like sandpaper the way Paca the Iguana did.  I asked if I could hold him but alas, no luck.  Hey, nothing asked, nothing gained.

There was, of course, the usual compliment of feathered friends.  The blue and gold Macaw, Cabo, is dusting it up with Mr. Red Boy.  They are all rescued birds that were illegally smuggled in from South America.  One of the birds (not pictured) was so badly injured in the smuggling process that its wing was broken.  Efforts to save the wing failed and he had to lose it but he is happily living at Wisdom thru Wildlife and doing just fine.

Igor, the Sulcata Tortoise, makes a liar out of Aesop.  Whoever told Aesop a tortoise was slow had never met Igor.  He weighs 75 lbs (more than Kaa!!!) and scoots along like he's fueled by high octane gas.
And I can't end any post about animals without giving you a glimpse of Delaware.  Little Mister, our rescue Chihuahua mix, weighs 6 lbs now.  He's doubled his weight since we got him ten weeks ago.  His new hiding place is under the chair.  He's too big to go under the sofa anymore so when he wants to tease Tanner, he slips under the chair and stays just out of reach.


Pam said...

Love your critters Annie. How game are you wanting to hold the alligator! I have always enjoyed holding and admiring creatures, but can't say an alligator would be top of my like-to list. Without appearing insensitive to the caring nature of your post,along with kangaroo we feature crocodile and snake on some uniquely Australian menus here - are alligator and snake eaten in the States? I continue to stick to the vegetarian options when dining out.
Your post is delightful!

Annie said...

omigoodness, pam. i suppose so but it would have to be a regional food. i won't say it doesn't exist but i think i can safely say the croc and gator and snake land on menus somewhere but not often.

Felisol said...

You're tougher than I thought possible. Hold a snake,..never, ever!
The other critters are OK, they have interesting looks, even the alligator, but I honestly would not want them as neighbors.
Your Delaware is welcome anytime.

Amy Burzese said...

That's a lot of critters. Delaware being the cutest, of course. Many hopes that he continues to improve with your care.

Jeanie said...

I'll pass on George. I know that theoretically you can't inherit phobias, but I will say I got the snake one from my gran!