HAVANA._ The happiness and enjoyment of children and adults alike is extraordinary: expressions of admiration, sighs, and even a tender hand held out to the African species enjoying the tropical Caribbean climate are commonplace in Cuba’s National Zoo, a setting that boasts an area of more than 40 hectares of manmade African grassland.
Visitors can enjoy this particular African atmosphere some eight kilometers east of Havana, a setting that I like to call the Cuban prairie because the animals seem to be running free, enjoying a scenery featuring palm, mastic, and carob trees, as well as other Cuban plant species.
The big cats like to have a nap under the leafiest trees, while the rhinoceros prefer to cool down in artificial lakes.
Giraffes, antelopes, and other mammals move out of the way of the vehicles that circle the areas reserved for the prominent visitors: more than 140 animals of 22 different species from Namibia’s Etosha National Park.
Visitors can see families of lions and mother lions such as Mariana, which has an international record of births, according to one of the zoo’s staff.
The zoo animals are given careful attention by Cuban veterinarians and specialists as well as from Namibian experts involved in the Noah’s Ark Operation; the project under which these animals were captured in that African country and brought to Havana.Share on FB Share on TT