Lee is getting comfortable at the Columbus Zoo. The girls, Anana and Aurora, are denned up for the season, so he has the whole place to himself. He prefers to sleep outside in his "man cave," rearranging the raffia bedding to suit himself.
|It is Wildlights Season at the Columbus Zoo,|
with lots of lights, even during the day.
|Lee's "man cave" and his scratching post|
When he does spend time indoors, the keepers give him lots of cardboard boxes to arrange and rearrange in his indoor bedroom, because he loves to decorate. Cardboard would be a problem with the water filtration system of the pools, so he has to be happy with fluffy straw and raffia outside.
|Interior Design by Lee|
|Lee weighs 1100 pounds now|
He arrived about a year ago from the Denver Zoo, where he had been living with Cranbearry, although they were kept separate. In Denver, he was showing stereotypical behavior, that is pacing and repetitive movements. It is much better in Columbus, where he has wide open meadows and lots of space for roaming and swimming.
He is very fond of Aurora and Anana, but is making the best of it while they are denned up. He is also very attached to his keepers, and they are very fond of him as well.
|His fur is looking great now that it has grown in|
I visited earlier this week, and Lee had just had his weekly allergy shot. The keepers have trained him to back up against the bars so he can get the injection, while another keeper fed him watermelon and peanut butter.
|Lee thinking about another nap|
The keepers are used to dealing with allergies, as the late Nanuq had a severe allergy to grass, and they had to medicate him for that.
|It feels good to scratch that itch|
|His "itching" grimace|
He has his favorite scratching posts, a trunk of a tree that has lots of knobs sticking out. He sometimes rubs on stones too.
|Showing his beautiful teeth which he scratches|
When he scratches with his paws, or rubs against something, he makes funny biting faces, showing his teeth.
|Scratching an itchy tummy|
Lee has enjoyed his time with sisters Aurora and Anana. Each has produced cubs before, so chances are good we may have cubs again this year.
|On his way to the scratching post|
Aurora and Yukon were parents of Anoki, now in Seneca Park Zoo Lee's twin sister Anana of the North Carolina Zoo, and Haley of the Memphis Zoo.
|Lee loves his soft bedding|
|Lee watches me|
|Lee blends in with his fluffy bedding, all carefully arranged|
|A little more scratching|
|Lee's itchy allergies are much better with his weekly allergy shots|
|Lee in the grassy area at the Detroit Zoo Arctic Ring of Life in summer of 2009|
|Lee looking over at young Talini next door - 2009 in Detroit|
|Lee a decade ago, in Detroit|