We enjoyed looking at the animals, especially the lorikeets, which you could feed by holding out a popsicle stick covered with bird feed.
I felt my usual ambivalence towards the zoo; the animals at Woodland Park have it pretty good; they live in reasonably spacious enclosures and given that the most were born in captivity, it’s hard to imagine that there’s anything particularly bad about their lives.
At the same time, though, I’ve taken lots of 5th and 6th graders to the zoo and I always ask them whether they’d be willing to trade places with the animals and if so, how large an enclosure they would need to feel they were living a satisfactory life. The general consensus is that a space at least as big as the state of Washington would be required; many students, though, insist they’d need a cage as big as the earth.
I would feel better about the zoo if it included a homo sapiens exhibit. There ought to be at least one cage with a family of human beings in it so we could see what it’s really like for the animals. The humans could have a living room set up with a TV and even a wireless internet connection.
The animals could watch us, then; and it would only take a few chimps and few typewriters to write this.