On the Wild Side Parc des fé­lins et Terre de singes

GREATER PARIS - - [Contents] Sommaire - By Pa­tri­cia Va­li­cen­ti

Two parks in the Seine and Marne of­fer a glimpse, res­pec­ti­ve­ly, in­to the won­der­ful world of fe­lines and mon­keys. Just one hour from the French ca­pi­tal a park de­vo­ted to the fe­lines of the pla­net is wai­ting to be dis­co­ve­red. The park is unique through the vast va­rie­ty of spe­cies that it wel­comes in­to spa­cious na­tu­ral en­clo­sures. There are some 170 fe­lines re­pre­sen­ting 26 spe­cies, threa­te­ned or en­dan­ge­red with ex­tinc­tion, at Le Parc des Fé­lins, among them, the Si­be­rian ti­ger, the lion of An­go­la, the rus­ty-spot­ted cat, one of the smal­lest wild cats in the world, and the lit­tle mar­gay cat that is a great tree clim­ber. Ni­ne­teen of the spe­cies are in­vol­ved in cap­tive bree­ding pro­grammes. There are well-in­for­med guides throu­ghout the park and there is a tour with com­men­ta­ry avai­lable on board a train, the Trans'fé­lins. Al­so just one hour from Pa­ris in the heart of Brie country is Terre de Singes (Mon­key Land), a fun and edu­ca­tio­nal wild­life park de­di­ca­ted to pro­tec­ting se­ve­ral spe­cies of pri­mates in­clu­ding the ge­la­das and the Bar­ba­ry ma­caques in a par­tial­ly woo­ded park of 20 hec­tares. All of the spe­cies of mon­key in the park are the ob­ject of cap­tive bree­ding pro­grammes. Vi­si­tors ob­serve in to­tal im­mer­sion a group of ma­caques and can enjoy lunch with a pa­no­ra­mic view on­to the ge­la­da en­clo­sure. A co­lour­ful par­rot sa­fa­ri in­side a vast avia­ry is al­so on the agen­da where 150 co­lour­ful and tal­ka­tive birds can be dis­co­ve­red.

The Brie country just east of Pa­ris is home to me­die­val towns, fo­rests, re­li­gious edi­fices, in­clu­ding the great ca­the­dral of Meaux, ver­dant farm­land filled with dai­ry cows and count­less va­rie­ties of one of the great cheeses of the world, Brie. Brie cheese

Le Parc des Fé­lins Do­maine de la For­telle, 77540 Lu­mi­gny-nes­lesOr­meau, 01 64 51 33 33 www.parc-des-fe­lins.com Terre de Singes 77540 Lu­mi­gny, 01 64 84 50 80 www.ter­re­de­singes.com

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