March 27, 2022
- as seen by -Priscilla Hernandez
I have come to appreciate the uniqueness of all four seasons, each serving as a reminder of the passage of time, cycling along as we go about our days. With each passing season, we have the opportunity to witness and experience remarkable changes, while also still feeling a certain familiarity. A sense of Déjà vu. Quarterly, we bear witness to the transformation of our surroundings, and if we’re lucky, a few of our encounters might gift us happy and long-lasting memories.
During the colder months, the Wildlife Conservation Society Bronx Zoo’s 265 acres transform into a winter wonderland. I’m an avid supporter of winter visits to the zoo, and for anyone who asks me, I always recommend a trip during these times.
Recently in mid-March, I had a memorable encounter of my own, during what might have been the final snowfall this season in New York City. I happened to already be in a cheerful mood at the start of the day, snow was forecasted, and I was anticipating the winter wonderland effect across our grounds. Flakes had been falling for about 30 minutes when I arrived. I made my way through the Bronx River entrance by foot and became fully immersed in the snowy surroundings. The ambience was very whimsical.
I admired the wintry scene as I made my way to Astor Court. I usually start off my days by greeting either the California sea lions or American bison. On this day, it happened to be both. The herd of bison looked picturesque in the distance. The brown fur covering their bodies was covered in powdery snow.
When I arrived at Astor Court, to my gleeful surprise, one of the sea lions seemed to also be enjoying the wintery ambiance. I caught some video footage of this playful moment. At first, I witnessed some dipping in and out of the water activity. At a second glance, I realized something else. For the first time, I observed sea lions trying to catch descending snowflakes by the mouthful.
This was a wonderful and unforgettable moment to close off the winter season. I was in awe and had I looked away a second sooner, would have missed this incredible moment. A lesson in slowing down? As we inch into the spring season, I wait in anticipation of what’s next and bid farewell to the tasty snow.
EDITOR’S NOTE: To celebrate Women’s History Month, Wild View is featuring posts by and about women and their contributions to science and conservation throughout March.