Big Caturday

By Phil Plait | October 2, 2010 7:00 am

My brother-in-law Chris is becoming a mainstay here on BA Caturdays. But his pictures are just so good! And since it’s Caturday, why not go big this time?

[Click to enfelinate.]

That’s a mama tiger and her cub at the Denver zoo. My family went there recently (without me; I was under a deadline for an article and was leaving the next day for North Dakota) and had a great time. I went with my wife and daughter last year, and it’s a really nice zoo. One of the better underrated ones.

While they were there Chris got lots of other great pictures, including this lazy ursine fellow. He’s also been taking pictures of hikes into the Rockies, and they’re spectacular as well. Check out the rest of his stuff on Flickr!

Related posts:

Mile high Caturday
Languid Caturday
A foxy Caturday
Caturday night’s all right for fighting

MORE ABOUT: Caturday, tiger

Comments (15)

Links to this Post

  1. White Tiger Relaxing: Singapore Zoo | October 24, 2010
  1. John Paradox

    Oooh.. big kitty.
    I wish I could get a photo of the local cats relaxing in my backyard, but they’re skittish when someone comes around. There are two youngsters, black and white, and one b/w adult (Mom?) who regularly can be found napping in my external storage area. Also at least one grey/gray (multiple shades) cat, apparently adult, and a ‘tabby’ (orange/white) who apparently is not welcomed by the others.


  2. Phil, is that someone’s back yard filled with tigers? Damn zoning laws won’t let me do that here.


  3. Michel

    Do big cats like catnip?
    Let¬īs see:

  4. Theramansi

    Yes, we big kitties LOVE our ‘nip.

  5. fred edison

    I’m at odds with animals in captivity of various kinds. There’s positive and negative sides, but I tend to see more negativity in the mix. I sincerely hope that a zoo won’t be the only place to see these magnificent creatures in the coming decades. If anything, I’d like to see more space and funds reserved for wildlife sanctuaries (a better alternative to a zoo) with adequate protection from poachers, more laws and enforcement to stop consumers of their selfish trade, and the general sorry lot of human parasites that rob us all of the diversity and beauty of what nature has painstakingly crafted.

  6. katwagner

    I’m still waiting for Dogturday. C’mon! When will it be here?

  7. Bunk

    We went to the Denver Zoo back in 2002 almost accidentally. We went downtown to go to the Denver Mint, but found out the hard way that it was closed to the public at that time because of a wave of terrorism paranoia. Having had time allotted for tourism, we just found something nearby on the map and that happened to be the Denver Zoo.

    I have to agree wholeheartedly that it’s a wonderful zoo and, since I’d never even heard of it at the time, also underrated.

  8. Pernille

    I looked at your brother-in-law’s pictures. He is a very talented photographer.

  9. Messier Tidy Upper

    @3. Michel : Thanks. That big cats on catnip clip was classic! :-)

  10. Supernova

    Awww… thanks, Phil! Must get back to the Denver zoo and see that tiger kitten.

  11. Gus Snarp

    As a parent probably the best thing about living in a decent sized city is the access to a world class zoo. I have a membership so I can take the kids any time, and if they are bored, tired, and cranky any time we can just leave and not feel like we aren’t getting our money’s worth. It’s one of the best investments a parent can make. The kids love it, they’re totally entertained, and they’re learning.

    @fred edison – I once felt more negatively, like you do, but zoos have changed dramatically from my childhood. Major zoos are serious research institutions, the animals are not just well cared for, they have large, naturalistic enclosures and get lots of enrichment. They aren’t just captured around the world and dropped in a cage for the amusement of visitors and enrichment of owners. My zoo is instrumental in rehabilitation and release into the wild of many animals, particularly manatees, and is a key player in captive breeding of a number of threatened species, particularly cheetahs. In addition they raise significant funds for programs to protect wild animals and run a major program working to preserve cheetahs in the wild by working with local people to protect both their herds and the cheetahs. Zoos now not only showcase animals, but also help to increase the numbers of threatened species through captive breeding and wild release, work to protect wild populations, and educate people about the plights these animals face in the wild and how they can help.

  12. Gus Snarp

    Sometimes I wonder why big cats don’t rule the land covered portions of the world. I mean really, what the hell competes with a tiger? They are the epitome of the term “apex predator”. I understand that humans have developed a unique ability with our technology to hunt and kill big cats, and we’ve destroyed a lot of their ecosystems, but doesn’t it seem like they should be harder to wipe out? I imagine that in real scientific terms it has a lot to do with food supply, but I also wonder about the effects of disease. Maybe I’ll see if there’s some decent papers on this.

  13. Jesse

    I knew that was Denver instantly. I love standing at that window inches away from the tiger. They are SO much bigger than you expect. =)

  14. Floyd

    (Tourist plug):
    I realize that it’s a long drive from Denver/Boulder to Albuquerque, but the Albuquerque Zoo is a very nice zoo as well. It was built within the Rio Grande Bosque (river forest), and has a great variety of animals to see. Worth a trip if you are going this way. We also have a very good natural history museum not far from the Old Town area as well.

    I live four blocks from the zoo, and often hear the gibbons hooting early in the morning.


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