The Polk Penguin Conservation Center

It’s certainly been a while since I last updated, and that’s in part with not being inspired to photograph anything and being preoccupied with other things.

However, I was privileged to be able to go to the Detroit Zoo on the day they opened the new Polk Penguin Conservation Center and it is glorious. The zoo has been working on building this new state of the art center for well over a year and now that it’s finally open, I can absolutely confirm that it is totally and unequivocally awesome.

You begin the journey by viewing the penguins via a large window, where you can also see the other side, of the center and another large window. Afterwards, you start the journey of winding your way around the center by walking downwards on a wide, wheelchair accessible ramp that’s fashioned to look like an old ship, with projections on the walls to make the experience more visual, sounds like water is spraying the ship, and bells and whistles that remind me of the Sydney Harbor scene in Finding Nemo. There’s also super light water sprinkles raining down on you the whole way down, and when you finally exit the ramp, there’s a light shower you can walk through (I walked around it because I had my camera) to continue your journey.

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At this point, you’ve reached the “underground” portion of the center, where you can see the penguins diving and swimming below. There’s even a portion that’s much like the Arctic Circle portion of the Detroit Zoo, where you walk through a tunnel, and can look 365 degrees to see the penguins swimming. This is the part where I noticed they had planted a lot of live star fish and anenome-like organisms throughout the aquarium. It was pretty cool to see them slowly moving their appendages. It was also pretty cool to watch one penguin nip at a starfish that refused to budge.

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However, my favorite part of the center was definitely the portion right after the tunnel, where you enter a large room  with huge glass panels that allow you to view the penguins swimming and diving and shows projects on the glass of interesting facts and how fast the penguins are swimming at the moment. The information and technology in the center is really want makes this center stand apart and brings the Detroit Zoo into the 21st century.

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The last stop of the exhibit is up a couple flights of stairs and full circle to the other side of the first view of the penguins atop their rocky habitat. It was here that I also noticed the penguins that I watched diving and swimming below, I could see come up for air here. They were beyond adorable.

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The end of the journey culminates in a penguin-specific gift shop, where I purchased 5 postcards, but was certainly tempted to buy a penguin plushie or two.

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Via Instagram. Follow me @lovelikeangels and @vivianapodinaphotography for more photography.

If you have the chance and opportunity to visit the Detroit Zoo and check out the new Polk Penguin Conservation Center, DO IT!

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Glow Bear

Heyyy. I didn’t get a chance to update last night cause it was basically midnight by the time I got home. I also didn’t manage to take as many pictures of ALL OF THE LIIIIGHTS as I had planned, but I did get a pretty sweet shot of this highly lit up polar bear at the end of the walk.

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First Snow

You know you’re in Michigan when one day you have sunny, relatively “warm” weather for late November (upper 50s!) and the next day THE WRATH OF THE SNOW GODS HAS FALLEN UPON YOU.

That’s what I woke up to this late morning, 15 minutes before I had to be at work (yay not setting alarms!) and left to in the late afternoon. I had a solid 3 inches of snow on my car and there’s a good 5 or 6 inches outside from the snow we got all day.

After putting up our Christmas tree, because this weather is clearly appropriate for it, I threw on my coat, boots, and earmuffs, and ran around outside trying to take pictures of the snow. A little difficult with not a lot of light to work with.

But I got a couple shots I liked. Here’s one of them!

Hoping to take some nice pics tomorrow during the day. I’ll also be at the Detroit Zoo for their first weekend of Wild Lights light exhibit, so I’m planning on working my magic there as well. Anyone else going?

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Summer Flowers at the Zoo

Hey guys! Yes I totally have been MIA from this blog for a month, but I also have meant to update it several times and just never got around to it.

I’m currently sick at home so I have spare time to do just that today.

I don’t recall if I’ve mentioned this previously, but I purchased a yearly pass for the Detroit Zoo this spring, so I’ve been going to the zoo more frequently than usual and all the little gardens they have along the trails are perfect for my floral photography.

Here are a few shots from my most recent trip, on my birthday.

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A Rose by Any Other Name

Oops I skipped a day. But I was so engrossed in finishing season two of Orange is the New Black with my brother last night and I honestly didn’t notice until about an hour or so after midnight.

Anyway! Here’s a gorgeous rose from the Detroit Zoo, near the barn. My favorite thing about the roses at the zoo is that they all smell as they should, not chemically and store-bought. I spent a while smelling them throughout the place.

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