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  • 4/7: Up Close

    Kevin has an extensive photo tour of Busch Gardens Africa newest addition "Jungala" - discuss it here!

    DIRECT ARTICLE LINK: http://www.miceage.com/kevinyee/ky040708a.htm
    "Politics is the profession whereby the inevitable is made to seem a great human achievement" - Quentin Crisp

  • #2
    Re: 4/7: Up Close

    The nets were really easy to run through, if you had the opportunity. We had a few times when we could just go, but mostly we were standing around waiting for the traffic going the opposite way to pass. Also, there were some sort of cable ties holding things here and there. They cut them to not stick out, but in doing that, they made sharp corners. I nicked myself a few times, nothing major, but the woman in front of me had a two inch cut that was dripping blood. Not good.

    Also, we did lose a shoe in the nets. Luckily we were near the bottom and I could just reach around and grab it. So it does happen.

    Those rubber panels were much funner than they looked. I didn't really want to go that way, but I'm sure glad we did!

    "Clever girl." haha. The orangutan is not a velociraptor.

    And that picture of Devon with the lorikeets is soooo cute! *squee*

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    • #3
      Re: 4/7: Up Close

      Sounds like a very cool park. I did have the same thought when reading it - will the interactions decrease over time as the animals get used to the humans, and the novelty wears off?

      Loved this anecdote: "The ape had waited until a clot of folks were in the right spot, then nailed us by pushing a button on her end". Imagine that, making a zoo fun for the animals too!
      My Micechat cruise trip report, Part 1:http://micechat.com/14795-disney-wonder/

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      • #4
        Re: 4/7: Up Close

        Looks terrific. Next time in FL, I'll have to go over there.

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        • #5
          Re: 4/7: Up Close

          Sounds awesome! I wish I could go to Florida




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          • #6
            Re: 4/7: Up Close

            Wow, sounds incredible. Hopefully the Imagineers are paying attention.

            Also, I just wanted to let you know that your last article is still being passionately debated on other forums. Especially the comments on FP. It's remarkable to me how few people understand that FP causes more problems than it solves (especially since it doesn't really solve any problems at all.)

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            • #7
              Re: 4/7: Up Close

              That's the marketing magic of FP. And that marketing magic is, to my mind, most of the reason why FP didn't just glow away forever rather quickly.
              Kevin Yee
              MiceAge Columnist

              I am the author of several Disney books:
              Jason's Disneyland Almanac - a daily history of Disneyland
              Walt Disney World Hidden History - tributes, homages, and ride remnants at WDW
              Your Day at the Magic Kingdom
              Mouse Trap
              Tokyo Disney Made Easy
              101 Things You Never Knew About Disneyland
              Magic Quizdom (The Disneyland Trivia Book)

              “The press [should be] a watchdog. Not an attack dog. Not a lapdog. A watchdog. Now, a watchdog can't be right all the time. He doesn't bark only when he sees or smells something that's dangerous. A good watchdog barks at things that are suspicious.” – Dan Rather

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              • #8
                Re: 4/7: Up Close

                I appreciate Kevin's review and respect his opinion, but strongly disagree with his saying that Jungala is superior to DAK's habitats. Having just returned from DAK, I can say that Pangani Forest and Maharajah Jungle Trek are easily the two best animal habitats I've experienced in the world, for the precise reason that they provide the strongest illusion that we are not in a zoo, but are visiting the tigers, gorillas, banteng, etc., in their natural habitat. While Junglala provides closer encounters with the animals , its many visible barriers, chain link fences, fake trees and gawdy buildings, are a constant reminder that we're in a zoo. And the sight of magnificent animals like orangutans and tigers confined in a zoo with a bunch of simpletons pounding on plastic cages to get the animals' attention is depressing to me.

                I'll take DAK's authenticity and escapism over Jungala's close encounters any day.
                http://www.idealbuildout.blogspot.com/

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                • #9
                  Re: 4/7: Up Close

                  Those are excellent observations ... and something I'll use in an upcoming print publication (no more on that for now). I'll definitely agree about escapism, though the irony is that DAK offers 'fake authenticity', or the illusion of authenticity. Actual authenticity would mean no barriers at all (go ahead and touch the gorilla and risk getting mauled). But you have a great point that Jungala in some ways looks like a zoo. Not in a lot of ways, mind you. It's a bazillion times removed from zoos in Sacramento, Berlin, Washington DC, Asheville (I like to visit zoos!)
                  Kevin Yee
                  MiceAge Columnist

                  I am the author of several Disney books:
                  Jason's Disneyland Almanac - a daily history of Disneyland
                  Walt Disney World Hidden History - tributes, homages, and ride remnants at WDW
                  Your Day at the Magic Kingdom
                  Mouse Trap
                  Tokyo Disney Made Easy
                  101 Things You Never Knew About Disneyland
                  Magic Quizdom (The Disneyland Trivia Book)

                  “The press [should be] a watchdog. Not an attack dog. Not a lapdog. A watchdog. Now, a watchdog can't be right all the time. He doesn't bark only when he sees or smells something that's dangerous. A good watchdog barks at things that are suspicious.” – Dan Rather

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                  • #10
                    Re: 4/7: Up Close

                    I agree there may be some irony to the "fake authenticity", but I think the level of detail at DAK also does greater justice to the animals, their habitat, and their plight. And in my opinion the landscaping and architecture (particularly the murals of Maharajah) at DAK are fine works of art in and of themselves. I'd enjoy those exhibits even without the animals. I was blown away but what I saw at DAK for the first time recently... when the Imagineers are on their game, they can produce some incredible stuff.
                    http://www.idealbuildout.blogspot.com/

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                    • #11
                      Re: 4/7: Up Close

                      Love your critique of Jungala. The forum has brought up some great zoo design questions, which get discussed on www.designingzoos.com. I'm a zoo designer, with PGAV, who usually designs the zoological attractions for the Busch parks and many other zoological institutions, and write the blog.

                      PGAV did not do this attraction. But, its still great to hear the pros and cons of visitors' experiences with animal exhibits. Every exhibit has its challenges, and I'm guessing with this attraction, the budget restricted combining both the up close interactions AND the very in-depth thematics (like Disney). Thats the sweet spot we're trying to hit, though, so keep watching...

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