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Animals in the News January

Bristol Zoo Project Receives Green Light to Construct New Forest Habitat

Exciting news has emerged from the Bristol Zoo Project as plans to construct a new forest habitat have been approved, signaling a significant milestone for conservation efforts. The forthcoming habitat, set to house a diverse array of species including western lowland gorillas and slender-snouted crocodiles, marks a crucial step forward for the Bristol Zoological Society (BZS). With work slated to commence in the spring, the project is anticipated to unfold in phases over the coming years.

According to BZS, the attainment of planning approval represents a distinctive opportunity to bolster conservation initiatives. The expansive habitat will not only accommodate gorillas but also host cherry-crowned mangabeys, African grey parrots, and various species of West African freshwater fish.

A standout feature of the endeavor is the generous space allotted to the gorillas and mangabeys, encompassing an area four-and-a-half times larger than their previous enclosure at the former Bristol Zoo Gardens site in Clifton. Designed to emulate the dense forests and landscapes of Equatorial Guinea, the habitat promises to provide an enriching environment for its inhabitants.

Moreover, the Bristol Zoo Project’s habitat will incorporate dedicated learning spaces aimed at engaging students, visitors, and schoolchildren in the observation and documentation of animal behavior. Brian Zimmerman, the Director of Conservation and Science at BZS, expressed enthusiasm for the project, emphasizing its potential to expand the organization’s conservation endeavors. “It also enables us to participate in, and lead, managed breeding programs, which will help to protect them in the future,” Zimmerman added.

With its commitment to conservation and education, the Bristol Zoo Project’s new forest habitat stands as a testament to the ongoing efforts to safeguard endangered species and promote environmental awareness. As construction commences, anticipation mounts for the transformative impact this initiative will have on both wildlife preservation and public engagement with nature.

Zoos Gear Up for Winter Weather with Special Preparations for Animal Comfort

As the wintry weather descends, zoos and animal attractions are taking proactive measures to ensure the well-being of their inhabitants, implementing strategies ranging from heat lamps to warm treats. Concerns over icy conditions prompted West Midland Safari Park in Worcestershire to consider keeping animals like giraffes indoors for safety. Meanwhile, Telford’s Exotic Zoo acknowledges the heightened importance of visitor turnout during the winter months to offset increased energy costs. At Dudley Zoo, preparations include providing sleds in case staff need to navigate snowy conditions while moving animal feed. Manager Matt Lewis emphasizes the importance of maintaining warmth for the animals, highlighting the heated, insulated indoor dens. Moreover, special treats like sugar-free squash and warm cakes are offered to animals like orangutans and red pandas to provide additional warmth.

In extreme cold, additional heat lamps are deployed, particularly crucial for primates and lemurs susceptible to frostbite. Angela Potter, head of wildlife at West Midland Safari Park, underscores the importance of well-insulated and heated housing, especially for animals accustomed to warmer climates. While some species may need to stay indoors during wintry blasts, others, like the red panda, thrive in colder conditions and even enjoy playing in the snow. Our Iceberg Float is popular with polar bears and other animals that are active in winter.

Police Safely Rescue Camels and Zebras from Trailer Fire on Indiana Interstate

A remarkable scene unfolded on an Indiana interstate as police responded to a fiery incident involving camels, zebras, and even a miniature horse over the weekend. The unexpected spectacle occurred when the trailer transporting these animals caught fire, leaving the animals grazing on the side of the highway. Fortunately, law enforcement swiftly intervened to ensure the safety of the stranded creatures.

“Grateful to report that all animals involved have been rescued safely. No harm to our furry friends,” assured the sheriff’s office, marking a successful outcome amidst the chaotic situation.

Photo: Associated Press

 

Exploring Play Behavior in Diamondback Terrapins: Insights from Zoo Atlanta’s Research

Did you know turtles engage in play behavior? It seems that diamondback terrapins do! Dr. Joe Mendelson, Director of Research at Zoo Atlanta, notes that play behavior in animals, akin to its interpretation in humans, encompasses activities that are fun, whimsical, and sometimes appear purposeless.

Dr. Joe noticed something interesting in the zoo’s terrapin exhibit. A water pump is located in the corner of the habitat. These clever turtles discovered a fun activity: swimming beneath the water stream and emerging into the plume. The blast of water flips the turtles over and blasts them back into the exhibit. The turtles like this activity so much they keep coming back for another round. Dr Joe suggests this play behavior is just that, a fun activity. You can watch the turtles playing here. We manufacture a variety of fun environmental enrichment products for just about any animal you have at your facility. From mice to elephant toys, we have it all!

Observing such behaviors sheds light on the cognitive and emotional lives of these reptiles, offering valuable insights into their social interactions and environmental engagement. Through ongoing research efforts at Zoo Atlanta, scientists aim to unravel the intricacies of play behavior in diamondback terrapins, further deepening our understanding of animal cognition and welfare.

 

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Exciting Zoo Projects for 2024

The Milwaukee County Zoo will begin work on a new rhinoceros facility in 2024

Excitement is in the air as the Milwaukee County Zoo embarks on a transformative journey in 2024 with the initiation of a groundbreaking project – the creation of a brand-new rhinoceros facility. Set against the backdrop of the Adventure Africa exhibit, the rhino facility represents the third and final phase of a comprehensive development plan. The first two phases of Adventure Africa witnessed the creation of modern habitats for elephants and hippopotamuses, setting the stage for the grand finale – a new home for rhinos. Zoo Director Amos Morris said the current rhino habitat, built in 1950, no longer aligns with modern zoological standards and has been unoccupied for several years. This project aims to not only revitalize the space but also contribute significantly to the conservation of a critically endangered species.

Morris envisions bringing Eastern Black Rhinos to the new facility, a move rooted in the urgent need to safeguard this critically endangered species. With fewer than 1,000 Eastern Black Rhinos remaining in the wild as of 2017, the threat of extinction looms large. Poaching, driven by the demand for rhino horns, poses a significant risk to their survival.

Morris, in a heartfelt commitment to conservation, shared that there are approximately 55 Eastern Black Rhinos dispersed across twenty-seven zoos in North America. The new facility, designed to meet the unique needs of these majestic creatures, aims to not only provide a safe haven but also raise awareness about the challenges they face in their natural habitat.

 

Nashville Zoo Announces Exciting African River Safari Expansion: Leopard Forest

The Nashville Zoo at Grasmere is building three new habitats in the Leopard Forrest exhibit. Located near the Giraffe habitat, the new exhibit will have customized habitats for amur leopards, colobus monkeys, and De Brazza’s monkeys. The project expands on the zoo’s ongoing breeding and conservation programs. Nashville Zoo is specifically focused on captive breeding of the Amur leopards to help in the conservation of these beautiful cats.

Tulsa Zoo Breaks Ground on New Elephant Preserve

The Tulsa Zoo has broken ground on the facility’s latest project, the Oxley Family Elephant Experience and Elephant Preserve. The preserve will be one of the largest Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) facilities of its kind in North America. The goal is to operate a world-class care for elephants at all stages of life. “We believe the new Oxley Family Elephant Experience and Elephant Preserve is going to change the way people view elephant care by allowing us to meet the individual physical, mental, medical and social needs of our elephants,” noted Lindsay Hutchinson, the zoo’s President and CEO.

 

 Clearwater Marine Aquarium Breaks Ground on Manatee Rehabilitation Center

In a response to the escalating challenges facing Florida’s manatee population, Clearwater Marine Aquarium (CMA) has accelerated its plans to construct a Manatee Rehabilitation Center at Fred Howard Park in Tarpon Springs. The announcement, made in July, cited the rising impact of Red Tide and the surge in manatee deaths along Florida’s east coast as driving factors for expediting the initiative.

the Manatee Rehabilitation Center is set to serve a dual role as an educational hub and a crucial facility for manatee rescue and rehabilitation. Dr. James Powell, the executive director of Clearwater Marine Aquarium, highlighted the pressing need for such facilities. He stated, “We have already far surpassed any previous year in manatee deaths, so it is critical that more facilities get involved to try to rehabilitate and get these animals back out into the wild.”

As the Manatee Rehabilitation Center takes shape, it stands as a testament to Clearwater Marine Aquarium’s commitment to conservation, education, and the well-being of Florida’s iconic manatees. This facility will play a pivotal role in mitigating the impact of environmental threats, fostering rehabilitation, and contributing to the broader efforts to safeguard the future of these beloved marine creatures.

Support for Your Expansions and Renovations

At Otto Environmental, we wholeheartedly celebrate the inspiring zoo expansion projects set to unfold in 2024. These initiatives not only promise great experiences for visitors but also play a pivotal role in advancing global animal conservation efforts. We take immense pride in supporting such transformative ventures and are dedicated to contributing our technical expertise in environmental enrichment. Our vast product range includes custom enclosures, caging, hardware, and specialized enrichment products. Contact us anytime to discuss your facility’s projects and enrichment programs!

 

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Polar Bear Welfare: Latest Developments In Environmental Enrichment

When it comes to polar bears (Ursus maritimus), providing effective environmental enrichment is essential for their overall health and happiness.

In this blog post, we will investigate the latest findings in environmental enrichment for polar bears and explore creative strategies to enhance their lives.

Understanding Polar Bears

Zoo staff are well-versed in the fundamentals of environmental enrichment, recognizing that it is not just about keeping polar bears fed and healthy, but also about stimulating their minds and encouraging natural behaviors. Polar bears, with their vast natural habitats in the Arctic, demand unique attention to detail in creating environments that mimic their wild homes. Without adequate enrichment, captive polar bears exhibit stereotypic behaviors.

The Case of Gus the Polar Bear

At the Central Park Zoo, Gus was one of the most popular animals in the 1990s. Unfortunately, it was his constant swimming (sterotypies) that attracted attention. You can see him in this video.  Gus swam laps in his pool for hours, every day. Keepers experimented with polar bear-specific enrichment practices, which dramatically helped Guy adapt to his environment. Here is what has proven to be effective enrichment practices for polar bears in captivity.

Physical Enrichment

Physical stimulation is crucial for polar bears, known for their playful and curious nature. Laurie J. Gage USDA APHIS Animal Care, presented an interesting paper on designing polar bear enclosures and exhibits. Laurie said, “Providing adequate space for polar bears not only gives them more incentive to exercise but may help to prevent stereotypies.” The Australian Society of Zookeepers has provided their guidelines to polar bear enrichment and is a handy reference.

 

Water Features

Polar bears are exceptional swimmers, spending a significant amount of their time in the water. Creating expansive water features within their enclosures not only provides opportunities for exercise but also mimics their natural aquatic environment. Adding items like our Iceberg Float or the Ice Flow provide for interesting water activities. Both are polar bear favorites in and out of the water. A recuring enrichment item used by zoos are floating balls such as the Otto Aqua Ball. Polar Bears will play with the balls on land and in the water. Aqua Balls are manufactured specifically for rough play by big bears.

Iceberg Large Float
Ice Flow Float
Otto Aqua Ball

Sensory Enrichment

The Arctic is a sensory-rich environment, and replicating these sensory experiences is crucial for polar bears’ well-being. The bears have an excellent sense of smell. Scent trails made with animal scents or aromatic herbs can engage their keen sense of smell. Polar bears enjoy foraging, especially for food. Research shows that providing forage challenges keep the animals engaged and avoids stereotypic behavior. The Stump Feeder can be packed with fish, meat, and vegetables. Bears roll, carry, and explore the feeder to obtain a snack.

Stump Feeder

 

Cognitive Enrichment

Engaging the bears in activities that require problem-solving and cognitive skills is essential. Puzzle feeders, where bears need to manipulate objects, can be both mentally and physically stimulating. The Cap Feeder is tough enough for bears and provides a simple to load feeding puzzle. A non-food cognitive device is the Bear Bell. We have discovered bears like to nudge and nose the stainless-steel bell, just for fun! Pings Pearls is another unique device that bears simply love. See for yourself!

Ping Pearls

Conclusion

One of the key takeaways from zoos and researchers is that polar bears benefit from routine enrichment sessions with caregivers and they like to have variety within the routines. Changing up the enrichment toys seems to keep the bears interested and engaged. The Calgary Zoo has a great video explaining all the techniques they use with their polar bears. By integrating diverse forms of enrichment, you ensure that these Arctic ambassadors thrive in captivity while fostering a deeper understanding and appreciation among visitors. Through dedicated efforts, we can contribute to the well-being of polar bears, not just as residents of our zoos, but as ambassadors for their wild counterparts facing challenges in the changing Arctic landscape.

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The Benefits of Ball-Style Enrichment Products

There’s something fun and exciting about rolling, throwing, and catching a ball.

Maybe you’ve played fetch with a dog or watched a cat bat a ball around. The truth is many animals, both exotic and domestic, obtain entertainment and comfort with ball enrichment devices. Balls facilitate exercise, exploration, interaction with the environment and other animals, and can also be a bond-forming between animals and caregivers. We have ball-style environmental enrichment products for all sizes of animals ranging from mice to hoof stock. Keep in mind when it comes to enrichment, the only limit is your imagination. A tough dog ball works with pigs, horses, and primates. A tiny bird ball can be used with small cats and even rodents like mice and rats.

The Jolly Ball Push-N-Play was designed to be an indestructible dog ball. These balls hold up to fetching, chewing, and rough play. They even float! That makes the Jolly Ball ideal for pigs, zebras, wolves, and primates ranging from apes to macaques. The Texas Biomedical Research Institute recommends the use of balls for primate manipulative enrichment. In particular, hard plastic balls, like the Jolly Ball, are recommended.

Jolly Ball Push-N-Play

Feeder balls, like the Stubbs England Horsey Ball, have proven to be effective enrichment with a variety of animals like zebras, horses, pigs, wolves, coyotes and other foraging animals.

The Horsey Ball is a “dribble feeder.” The idea is to load the ball with appropriate biscuit or kibbled foods. As the device is rolled, nudged, or handled, food is slowly dispensed. This multisensory enrichment using treat-based puzzle-solving has proven effective with swine, primates, and bears. Treat-dispensing balls have even helped with captive walruses!

Stubbs England Horsey Ball

Research continues to show that enrichment is beneficial and even essential for small animal health in zoo, shelter, and research settings. Soft ball products like the Ferret Sport Ball are easy for animals like mice, rats, rabbits, guinea pigs, and other small mammals to nudge, carry, roll and nestle. The Atomic Nut Ball is an all-wood toy designed to be chewable. This satisfies the desire of rabbits and other small animals to gnaw and chew, preventing boredom and stereotypical behavior in enclosures and petting displays.

Atomic Nut Ball
Ferret Sport Ball

Don’t forget the birds!

Conures, African grays, cockatoos, cockatiels, and other parrots love to manipulate, taste, rattle, and tug on small balls. Foraging balls provide puzzle-solving activities with a food reward and have been shown to be effective with parrots. The hanging Buffet Ball provides parrots with needed visual, tactile, and taste stimuli.

Buffet Ball

Caring for large animals? They’ll benefit from large balls!

Amber Barnes, writing about horse enrichment for Opensanctuary.org, recommends rolling enrichment devices coupled with food dispensing. Sheep, goats, cattle, large primates, and bears will benefit from products like the huge 30” Planet Ball. It’s big, tough, and easy to roll!

30″ Planet Ball

No matter what type of animals you have in your facility, there are ball-style enrichment devices that improve animal health, quality of life, and research outcomes.

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What’s the deal with KONG?

You probably recognize the KONG brand of dog toys. Did you know KONG has been producing enrichment products for exotic and companion animals since 1976?

KONG is recognized by animal professionals around the world as a manufacturer of exceptional enrichment products for all kinds of animals. Whether in a zoo, home, laboratory, or shelter, these products will help animals feel secure in their environment.

KONG products have been the subject of primate enrichment research studies and found to provide effective enrichment through novel product design. The Texas Biomedical Research Institute recommends KONG products like the Hanging Rubber Forager and Stuff a Ball, in their Primate Enrichment Manual. But the Kong enrichment products go beyond primates.

hanging red rubber foraging device
Hanging KONG Classic

Amber Banes, writing about enrichment for horses for the Open Sanctuary Project, says “Add things they can manipulate with their hooves, like balls, and things they can toss around with their mouths.” KONG manufactures durable balls suitable for horses and other hooved animals. Research indicates that horses and other animals fare better when they are offered grazing variety and challenges. Slow-feeding reduced stereotypical behavior. The KONG Zoo Classic is designed to make it easy to provide this form of enrichment.

kong zoo classic gallery with sku
KONG Zoo Classic (3 Styles)

You’re familiar with KONG dog chew toys but they’re great for all canines. Maricopa County Animal Care and Control (Phoenix, AZ) found that KONG toys stuffed with treats helped dogs stay calm while in quarantine. You can use the same technique for all canids: like wolves, jackals, and foxes. Whether in an enclosure, during transport, while in veterinary care, or when acclimating a new arrival.

Perdue University’s Center for Animal Welfare Science notes that canine boredom is a real issue and can be countered with enrichment products stuffed with treats, tossing a ball during human-canine interaction, and even tug of wars with other canines. It’s also important to periodically change the enrichment toys to keep the animals interested and challenged.

We can’t forget about cats, large or small!

Don’t be fooled by their stoic behavior. Unhappy felines can appear calm but have elevated stress hormones. The American Association of Feline Practitioners (AAFP) and International Society of Feline Medicine (ISFM) have published the Environmental Needs Guidelines for cats. Larger cats in zoo and park environments have similar enrichment needs. All have a desire to stalk, pounce, chew and explore interesting scents, tastes, and textures. KONG has created a full range of enrichment products for any sized cat. The Nibble Crtitters Catnipillar is ideal for small cats. The Duratreat Ring is a food puzzle that you fill with interesting scents and tastes and can be enjoyed by larger cats.

There is no limit to where you’ll be able to use KONG products in your animal care facility. Chickens and other birds can become stressed if not provided with an interesting environment. One of the ways to keep birds happy is through the use of enrichment toys like colorful balls and feeding puzzles.

chickens playing with kong genius leo
KONG Genius Leo

No matter what animals your caring for KONG has safe, durable products that will fit right into your enrichment program.

 

YouTube video of KONG manufacturing:

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Creating Habitat Enrichment with Ladders, Rafts, and Hammocks

primate in a round hammock

Periodically changing your animal’s environment creates new experiences that stimulate mind and body.

Physical and cognitive enrichment counter “under-challenge” situations where animals become bored. Research suggests that when animals learn to “conquer” a new challenge, it results in better emotional health and less stress. Marian Stamp Dawkins (Dept. of Zoology, University of Oxford) notes that when animals are prevented from performing desired activities, abnormal and sometimes harmful behaviors come to the surface. Cage biting often leads to mouth damage. Birds may scratch about or fight with other birds. Elephants rock back and forth.

Adding enrichment items that mimic vines, trees, and perching areas stimulate animals to explore their environment, exercising mind and body. It is not necessary to “remodel” your animal’s habitat to keep them engaged and healthy.

Here are a few time-tested enrichment devices that are easy to install and work with a variety of animals.

The Tirezan Primate Swing was developed for monkeys, apes, and orangutans. But we found other animals like Pandas and Koalas find the Tirezan appealing. The natural rubber tire hangs from three stainless-steel chains. The polypropylene upper deck prevents the chains from getting tangled and makes it easy to hang the Tirezan from a tree or other mount.

tirezan swing
Tirezan Swing

Smaller primates like Tamarins, Marmosets, Gibbons, and Macaques love to hang and swing from the Dream Swing. Made from sturdy, high-density plastic, the Dream Swing can take rough play and multiple primates climbing aboard. The swing is 16” wide and comes with an 18” stainless-steel chain for hanging. You can even add Hanging Snack Balls to add food-based enrichment. Small primates enjoy moving about above-ground, much like their behavior in the wild.

Dream Swing

The Collapsible Ladder provides small primates an elevated place to climb and explore. The 1” PEX plastic rungs are easy to grasp with paw or claws. You can hang the ladder between posts, trees, or attach it to a wall. Need a longer ladder? Just join two ladders together with the clasps. The ladder also works well with larger parrots as a perch.

collapsible ladder
Collapsible Ladder

Rest time is not time wasted, animals need a comfy and secure location to nap or lounge.

The Banana Hammock is a favorite among ferrets. The soft fleece and pouch-like hammock creates the ideal bedding and social meeting place. Large animals need a sturdy hammock that can handle the weight and wear caused by heavy animals. The Aussie Dog Borneo Hammock is three meters in diameter. Made of rip-stop canvas, the Borneo Hammock will support large primates, bears and other heavy carnivores.

Aussie Dog Borneo Hammock

Mammals like otters, seals, sea lions and other pinnipeds enjoy gathering on a raft or just lazing in the sun. The Aussie Dog Seal Float provides a stable raft made of rip-stop webbing and a stainless-steel frame. The smaller Otter Float with mirror appeals to otters but also attracts seabirds.

Aussie Dog Seal Float

We offer many more swings, ladders, and rafts, in a variety of materials and sizes for just about any animal in your care. If you need enrichment ideas, please contact us.

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Animals That Rarely Get Cancer – Current Research Explores Why

Cancer is the one of leading causes of death globally among humans. But did you know that cancer is widespread among animals? The American Cancer Society estimates in 2022, 1,918,030 new cancer cases are projected to arise in the United States alone. Each time a cell divides, there is a chance for a genetic mutation. These mutations can lead to cancer. Chances are you know of someone affected by the disease. Cancer takes its toll on wild and domesticated fish, birds, mollusks, reptiles, and mammals. Some animals develop forms of cancer similar to humans.  Rare forms are contagious! Devil Facial Tumor Disease (DFTD), a contagious cancer, has decimated Tasmanian Devil populations. On the opposite side, some animals seem to be almost immune to cancer.

Why elephants rarely get cancer has puzzled researchers for decades. New research revealed elephants have 38 additional modified copies of the gene TP53, which acts as a tumor suppressor (Humans have only two). Elephants also have a more robust mechanism for killing damaged cells that are at risk for becoming cancerous. But elephants aren’t the only animals resistant to cancer, whales are too!

Unlike elephants,  whales have only one copy of the TP53 gene. Being so large and having so many cells should mean greater chance of DNA mutations, which lead to cancer cell development. But genetic research on bowhead and other whales, indicate that whales have fewer DNA mutations than other animals, which may be one of the reasons for resistance to cancer. One theory is that whales have a more efficient cancer suppression system.

elephant drum
Elephant Drum Enrichment Device

 

Another animal, much smaller than whales, is also the subject of cancer research. While mice are very prone to cancer, the Naked Mole Rat (Heterocephalus glaber) is not. Studies at The Gorbunova and Seluanov Laboratory (University of Rochester) found that the animals make an ultra-high molecular weight form of hyaluronic acid, which may play a role in cancer resistance.

The Blind Mole Rat (Spalax) is also the subject of cancer research. Tumors have never been observed in these animals. Research demonstrated that Blind Mole Rats are resistant to spontaneous cancer but also lab-induced cancer. Spalax fibroblasts inhibit cancer growth and facilitate cancer cells death.

So, what does this mean for the direction of cancer research? Daniela Tejada-Martinez at the Austral University of Chile is studying tumor-suppressing whale genes. She says:

“It’s not like we’re gonna be taking whale genes and putting them into humans and making humans cancer resistant,” says Lynch. “But if you can find the genes that play a role in tumor suppression in other animals, and if you could figure out what they’re doing, maybe you can make a drug that mimics that for human treatment.”

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Tips for Enriching Your Animal’s Aquatic Habitat

enriching device for aquatic animal polar bear

Summertime brings many visitors to zoos and public aquariums. It is no secret people love watching animals have fun in the water. But as any animal care professional knows, it takes more than just water to keep the animals engaged with their environment.

Ursids are inquisitive. Bears need interesting things to keep them curious and active in their environment. Bears really enjoy wrestling with large objects on land and in the water. The Funny Float is designed to provide large animals like bears and tigers with a toy that is the right size and shape, and able to stand up to the rough treatment dished out by these animals. Instead of taking a one size fits all approach, the Funny Float is available in a variety of sizes and wall thickness so you can match the float to the animal. Funny Floats are available in over twenty color patterns, making it easy to select the right design for your exhibit.

If you are caring for polar bears, penguins, otters, turtles, and other animals that enjoy the water, the Ice Flow has proven to be a winner. The Ice Flow is a floating platform for penguins and other birds. It’s also something for bears and tigers to push around. To increase engagement and curiosity, the Ice Flow has a food chamber that slowly releases food scent and flavor through six grooves molded into the structure.

Creating the proper environment for penguins is key to their long-term wellbeing. Many of the more common enrichment tools are not interesting to the birds. Some Penguin keepers have given up on the idea of using enrichment toys. Georgia Podmore from Penguins International notes that birds are sometimes nervous around the balls and other objects. She suggests experimenting with a mirror suspended under water. This is good advice. Our Underwater Mirror is built for this purpose! The exhibit-safe Lexan mirrors and stainless-steel hardware are durable and will not corrode. The Underwater Mirror provides penguins (and other aquatic life) an engaging focal point within the underwater environment.

An otter environment requires land and aquatic habitats to reduce stress and keep the family groups cohesive. It is recommended to provide otters with complex shapes in the aquatic side of the display. Aussie Dog Zoo designed their Otter Float with this in mind. The Float provides a stable platform for lazing in the sun and playing with others in the group. A Lexan mirror completes the package for full sensory, physical and interactive enrichment. Penguins and other seabirds also find the floating platform appealing.

A simple way to stimulate many of the animals in your care is with our Teaser Balls. More than a regular ball toy, Teaser Balls are a ball within a ball. This design has proven popular with many animals because it provides physical and auditory stimulation. The sights and sounds of the rattling balls are like a puzzle to solve. Whether on land or in the water, your animals will love chewing, pushing and playing with a Teaser Ball.