| Saturday, December 11, 2004
| BEST ZOOS FOR KIDS IN THE UNITED STATES
|(abstracted CHILDMAG/by: Maureen P. Sangiorgio)
LOWRY PARK ZOO
SIZE: 1,614 animals on 56 acres
Boasts a 4 1/2 acre Australian them children's zoo,
where kids can feed and pet kangaroos and wallabies,
pretend they're herding sheep, and cool off in
Billabong. a water play area with aninal statues
Contact Information: 813-935-8552
SAN DIEGO ZOO
SIZE: 4,000 animals on 100 acres
Boasts highly qualified staff-- 95% of animal-care employees have a
a degree in zoology.
Operates a 30 exhibit children's zoo that contains nurseries for
sick and weak baby animals; a petting paddock where kids can touch
goats, sheep, and miniature horses; zany science shows hosted by
Dr. Zoolittle; and "Bugtown: The Itrty Bitty City", whis is
filled with other insects in a tiny version of their natural habitat.
Contact Information: 619-231-1515
OKLAHOMA CITY ZOOLOGICAL PARK AND BOTANICAL GARDEN
SIZE: 1,520 Animals on 110 acres
Hosts a monthly stroller safari, a guided tour for toddlers given
by a naturalist who examines insects, leaves, plants and
other things at their eye level.
Hands out a free family activity packet designed to fine tune
children's observation skills, such as finding colors
and patterns throughout the zoo.
Contact Information: 405-424-3344
SIZE:5,938 animals on 216 acres
Houses a 2,000 seat Dolphinarium where children from the audience
are selcted to participate in dolphin shows.
Showcases 20 species of butterflies as part of a screened-in,
landscaped exhibit that featurew winding walkway where kids
can get eyeball-to-antenna with them.
Was the first zoo to exhibit animals in a barless setting, to
display pandas in North America, and to breed black rhinoceroses.
Contact Information: 708-485-0263
SIZE: 1,300 animals on 125 acres
Operates Wilderness Experience Night Camp, where families stay
lakeside in a private tent, enjoy a grilled dinner with s'mores,
learn about nocturnal animals, take a guided hike, and receive
advice on how to navigate using the stars.
Launched a landmark conservation program, that saved the Arabian oryx
(an antelope) from extinction; 30 years ago the population was only
14 animals worldwide, and now there are several thousand, with
a baby due this summer.
Contact Information: 602-273-1341
CINCINNATI ZOO AND BOTANICAL GARDEN
SIZE: 1,733 animals on 75 acres
Is Home to the largest venomous snake in the New World
the bushmaster, and one of only two U.S. zoos to showcase
the Chinese giant salamander.
In 2001, delivered the first Sumatran rhino calf to be bred in
captivity in 112 years; the calf's mother, Emi, is expecting
another calf in the late July.
Contact Information: 800-94-HIPPO
SIZE: 4,427 animals on 265 acres
Features a year old "Tiger Mountain" exhibit, a 3-acre
re-creation of Amur Valley on the border of Russia and China
with dramatic views of Siberian tigers; kids can test their
strength against a tiger's by pulling a spring loaded ball.
Operates a Skyfari that transports visitors across the park.
Contact Information: 718-367-1010
SIZE: 4,723 animals on 74 acres
Distributes a trading card fo Eddie the Education Dog, and
Australian sheperd mix who performs agility demonstations
several times daily; the back of the trading card highlights
the important responsibility of pet ownership.
Offers a newly renovated aviary with a walk throguh exhibit of
desert birds and a keyboard kids can use to play bird songs.
Contact Information: 419-385-4040
FORT WAYNE CHILDREN'S ZOO
SIZE: 1,500 animals on 38 acres
Showcases the only Tasmanian devil outside Australia and feature
an Australian Welcome Center, where kids can try on swagman's
(the down under version of cowboy) clothes and climb into
a giant kangaroo's pouch.
Was the first North American zoo to breed rare black storks,
after 15-year effort, Chocolat, was hatched in 2001.
|posted by infraternam meam @ 1:59 AM