This is Lu. He’s the only non-indigenous animal living at the Homossasa Springs State Park. As in most of the other places we visited while we were in Florida, the park was originally private. All of the other exotic animals were given new homes, but no one wanted a gigantic hippopotamus. So the governor of Florida made him a citizen and he lives happily near the alligators. I heard he turned 49 this year, which is really old for a hippopotamus (or so they say).
These are Lu’s alligator neighbors. When Jean and I passed them, they were quite happily sunning themselves (along with some of their friends, who didn’t fit in the picture). They were still there as we were leaving. Guess reptiles are lucky that they’re so cold-blooded because Jean and I were both quite warm. :)
There were flamingos all over in the bird section of the park. All of the animals in the park are there because of some issue they had in the wild or because they were born in captivity. These flamingos are only a few of the ones we saw as we walked around. There were several small groups and one rather large group. In the large group, there must have been a bunch of males because they were frequently fighting amongst themselves. But that’s just a guess.
These are a couple of kestrels (I think…). Most of the pictures of the really cool birds weren’t very cool because I didn’t take Tony’s camera with me when we went into the park. When we arrived, the building didn’t look like there would be much that would be worth taking pictures. I didn’t realize until later that we had to take a boat ride (over a mile) to the final destination with all the animals. Bummer.