Canadian Domain

Yesterday I posted the picture of this sign in my post about Canada Day. Today I will share a few pictures of the animals who have their home in the Canadian Domain at the Toronto Zoo. I almost missed this part of the Toronto Zoo, the entrance was tucked away at the edge of the African Savanna. If I had not been looking at my map I would have missed a great part of the zoo. To reach the Canadian Domain, I had a nice hike ahead of me along a hilly road. The exhibits were initially constructed in conjunction with a monorail, so they were quite a distance from the other areas of the zoo. However, the walk was well worth it as I was able to see some nice animals.

The first picture shows how far away I was from the Wood Bison (Bison bison athabascae). The Wood Bison is a separate sub-species from the Plains Bison (Bison bison bison) that I am more familiar with. They are slightly larger and carry their weight closer to the front of their bodies.

20120702-181716.jpgOf course I wanted to get a closer picture of them. Luckily I have a good zoom on my camera so was able to get a few shots like the next picture. I love their shaggy look as they shed their Winter coats.


Next we have a Grizzly Bear (Ursus arctos horribilis). I love the Latin name and the story behind it. Horribilis actually comes from a misunderstanding by George Ord who was the naturalist responsible for the name. Grizzly refers to the gray hairs of the bear. Grisly means terrifying and that is how George misunderstood the name.  Both words are pronounced the same, but have different meanings. It is all in the spelling :-).

Here I got a nice shot of the Grizzly bear as he sat contemplating his visitors. I was glad that there was a nice thick wall of glass between us when I saw the size of his claws.


I really wanted to get a nice shot of a Moose (Alces alces americana). However, they decided to hide at the end of their pavilion. I did get one slightly blurry shot of them lying in the shade. I almost missed them, but saw some movement and was able to find them. With their coloring they have good camouflage when in a forested area.

20120702-181801.jpgThe walk through the Canadian Domain was nice and well worth the time and exertion. There is a nice interpretive walk around a large pond that was also very nice. However, you must visit in the next couple of years to see it as they are going to move the animals to a new exhibit area called the Canadian Wilderness that will not be so remote from the rest of the Zoo.


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5 Responses to Canadian Domain

  1. Boomdeeadda says:

    You’re right, that grizzly looks like a bruiser! Not sure how he got himself into a zoo, hopefully for his own good (health??). We see moose all the time on country roads here. Must be extremely alert when driving after dark. One of the reasons we moved in to the city. I can’t drive at night anymore. I’d much rather spend the day with these guys then the rush of people in Toronto….that city is a zoo. HA

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