I remember very well when the majestic giant vulture was very nearly extinct, just 30 years ago—and when Brooke Shields did a summer internship at the San Diego Zoo next to my high school downtown, your teenaged correspondent went over and watched the movie star help feed chunks of meat to the bred-in-captivity chicks. The humans wore special “condor muppets” so the babies would … get used to horrible muppets? No, of course not! So the babies wouldn’t fall in love with Brooke Shields.
But I could see her, in her stylish safari-style uniform that looked a little better tailored than those worn by the average zoo worker. I could see she wasn’t a condor, and I could not keep from falling in love, at least for the afternoon. Condors, everybody! Follow the Ventana Wildlife Society and the Oakland Zoo for live updates on the condors’ big first day in the wild.
UPDATE: Here’s a Condor Cam montage if you missed today’s excitement: (more…)