August 15, 1999
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Live cameras connected to the Web can be either incredibly fascinating
or amazingly dull. Bypassing the absurd (such as The Peeling Paint
Webcam), I’ve assembled a collection of animal cams that includes a
virtual game reserve, adoptable pets, a virtual zoo and a very busy bird
feeder. Since all these images are live, some are visible only during
daylight hours, so I’ve noted the time zone of each site.
"Africam welcomes you to the world’s first virtual
game reserve." This amazing site is a treasure trove of thirteen cams
located in five South African national parks and game reserves. Choose
from cams at watering holes, wild dog cams, elephant cams, even mobile cams
operated by park rangers. Have you ever dreamed of going on a photo
safari? Snap a picture of any of the cams (use the right-hand button on
your mouse and choose Save Image As) and email it to Africam for possible
selection as Picture of the Day. The competition is tough, however, as they
often receive 500 images a day. (GMT+2)
Although not devoted exclusively to animal cams, Animal Planet (from
Discovery Online) has enough cams to be included in today’s list. You’ll
find four cams listed in a row near the top of the page — they range
from an adoptable puppy in the Miami Animal Shelter to sharks swimming in
the Waikiki Aquarium. Don’t miss the twin baby gorillas from the Oklahoma
Children’s Zoo (look for the link in the top right corner). Since the cams
are geographically diverse, each has its own optimal viewing time. (HT,
PT, CT, ET)
From the National Zoo in Washington, D.C., come nine animal cams and ZooTV with a schedule of live Webcast
events. To savor the entire virtual zoo experience, take in the daily
elephant foot care demo, the weekly Meet-a-Kiwi Webcam, or
the naked mole-rat habitat tour. Some of these live events include chat.
The Cutest-and-Cuddliest Award goes to the three Sumatran tiger cubs born
on June 23.(ET)
The "Online Pet Adoption Network — linking homeless pets to loving
families" aims to get shelter animals adopted using the latest live
video technology. What a fabulous idea! The Puppy Cam (which features both
dogs and cats) currently has cameras up and running in thirty-two states,
with more on the way. The actual adoption does not happen online, so if
you do fall in love with one of these cuties, you’ll have to drive to the
shelter. Hopefully the object of your affection won’t live too far away.
(PT, MT, CT, ET)
I love bird watching, and do watch the birds at the feeder outside my
kitchen window whenever I remember to fill the feeder with seed. For those
without such a view (or those too lazy to fill the feeder) here is an
opportunity to bird watch at a feeder that is never empty and always seems
to have happy customers. (ET)
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© 1999 Barbara J. Feldman