We are working hard getting the animals into their summer exhibits. The weather has been a little chilly so some of our birds and monkeys will have to stay inside for a little bit…but it is getting warmer each day so we are able to bring out more animals each day! The lions, tigers, giraffes, rhinos, chimpanzees, deer forest, kangaroos and so many more are already out! This picture of Kya our bengal tiger is catching a scent…hmm could it be our visitors perhaps? Come on down for a visit…the animals are waiting for you!
This Grivet was born on January 15, 2013 and more babies are being born at Southwick’s Zoo all the time! We’ve recently had a Schmidt’s Guenon born on March 21, 2013 and a Ring Tailed Lemur on March 10th. Grivets are very active monkeys and moms are know to “share” their babies. Females will care for each other’s young, called allomothering. Here at Southwick’s Zoo, many times you will see siblings pull each other’s tail, jumping around, playing chase and of course, annoying their moms! They are such a fun and active group and we are happy to share them with you.
Feeding time for the Eurasian Eagle Owl is always interesting ….and cool! We have a pair (male and female) owls. The female is larger than the male and more aggressive. She will swoop down and grab her prey from either on the ground or in the air before the male. The male is more shy and will wait to feed. The Eagle Owl is quite large and can swallow their prey whole since they cannot chew their food. They have a really neat digestive system that will regurgitate the remains of the prey after they get the nutrition from the food in the form of owl pellets. Owl Pellets have the fur and full bone remains of the prey. You can see some owl pellets in the Earth Discovery Center!
We thought it would be great to share a picture of our Bengal tigers, Kya and Taj at play. Kya and Taj are sisters and came to us as cubs from World Wildlife Zoo in Phoenix, AZ! As you can see they have adapted to our New England weather and enjoy playtime out in the snow. Like many animals, they love fresh snow and can be seen pouncing on each other during playtime!
We have to thank the grounds crew for keeping up with the snow! We received over 30″ of snow during a 2 day period and snow removal is always an issue when there is so much of it! Many of our animals who can go in and outdoors were seen out in the blizzard! The Yaks and the Camels especially didn’t wait for us to clear out in front of their indoor enclosures, they did it all by themselves. The lion took a venture outside once the sun came out and rolled about in the snow. All our animals did great during the storm, it’s the human folk that are still digging out. Happy Valentine’s Day!
It’s finally feeling like winter around here. The light snow cover on the ground has been nice the past few days but Friday might not be so nice! I’m fixing the tarp over the North American Porcupines right now, it blew off in the wind storm we had last week. They will be tucked away in their house, all nice and warm during the storm. Depending on the amount of snow, some of our animals might have to enjoy some indoor activities for a few days. But they will be ready to enjoy the snow once the weather is nice again. We plan on making snowmen for the chimps and mandrills after the snowstorm!
The Lion Cubs are getting really big and they are definitely showing their predator instincts. Although they are adorable and amazingly beautiful, they are “wild” and dangerous animals. Safety is our number one priority in caring for these animals and it is a Zookeeper’s job to never underestimate an animal and to observe and learn from their behavior. In this picture, our little male lion was reacting to his sister trying to steal a toy. Notice the teeth (yowza), eyes, and claws…they are definitely not babies anymore. They can be incredibly fast and unpredictable at this stage as they are learning, exploring and growing. They have been on a meat diet for some time (beef & venison) and they are only 3 months old!
On December 21, 2012 twin marmosets were born here at the zoo! Right away mama had her hands full caring for her babies and this little one decided to be a rebel. We do not know the sexes as it will take a few more weeks before we can determine the sex. This little monkey decided to keep “wandering off” away from mama where he/she could not be properly cared for. To make sure the little monkey was getting the proper nutrition and care, staff had to intervene. Hopefully soon he/she will be back with mama…right now mama is doing great caring for the sibling! Marmoset monkeys are a very small monkey that only grow to weigh 8 – 9 OZ and are native to the Brazil area of South America.
The Chimpanzees had a blast after the recent snow! Tanzie, the almost 4 year old chimpanzee loves the snow! When she came outside this morning, the first thing she did was stick her face in the snow. Her mother Tabitha started eating the snow while Tanzie proceeded to jump around and play in the snow. Many of the other animals at the zoo enjoy the snow, but the chimpanzees have the most fun with it. When when have a substantial snow storm we will make snow men in their exhibit for them to enjoy!
Primate Zookeeper Jess reported that a baby grivet monkey was born on September 27, 2012 and mom and baby are doing great. She is a young mother so she is very active and a good mom. She enjoyed the pumpkins from Zoo Boo days with the other grivets. They had a great time playing with and eating the pumpkins!
Mom and Baby enjoying the beautiful Fall Weather!
So lucky to get this snapshot to share with our friends!