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Saturday, November 5, 2016

It's the Great Pumpkin!

Too often these days, it seems that the moment Halloween is over, it immediately becomes Christmas time.  Hanging ghosts come down from neighborhood trees and are replaced by Christmas lights and stores stop playing "Monster Mash" and begin endlessly looping Christmas carols. 

Except at zoos.  Here, Halloween tends to stick around for a few days longer.  That's because the local zoo is often a welcome repository for that most perishable of Halloween symbols - pumpkins.

Animals of all sizes and all types love pumpkins.  For some, they are tasty treats.  For others, they are hollowed-out toys where treats can be hidden inside.  For others, they're just something fun to smash.  And for some, it's all of the above... except for the inevitable few who are terrified of them.

Elephants stomp pumpkins into mush.  Hippos crush them in their massive jaws.  Bears shred them to pieces with their claws.  Parrots demolish them with their beaks.  Apes carry them up high and drop them.  At the end of the day, there are very few pumpkins which retain their original shape.  There's also quite a mess the next day, between the pulverized pumpkins and the alarmingly orange poop.

That's okay, though.  It's almost a pleasure to clean up a mess that's so much fun to make.

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