What is one of the things I love about working at John Ball Zoo?!?
Being able to see the support we get from the surrounding communities. We get to see many different ways our community is involved here at the zoo, from financial and material donations to all the volunteers that donate their time and energy to the zoo. I have a great story to share highlighting how one persons idea brought some excitement and joy to our lions.
Back in the fall I was contacted by an Eagle Scout named Drew, who had an interest in animal enrichment. (Not sure what enrichment is? check out my previous blog about enrichment and how it plays an important role in animal care.) Drew and I set up a meeting where Drew showed up with an idea to make a large fire hose ball for our lions. He had a done some research, had printed out instructions and was fully prepared. His ambition and passion was inspiring. After the Animal Management staff made sure this project would be safe for our animals, Drew got the go ahead to start working on this project. He and his family made two toys for our lions, one hanging and one free standing. Over the winter we were able to give the lions the free standing one inside the holding area. At first inspection Kiume was very interested in the scent of this new item. Aft
er a few moments of inspection, he started batting it around. Soon he was carrying it around and trying his best to tear it apart. Luckily Drew did a fantastic job putting this together and it stayed intact. Thank you Drew for your hard work and dedication, we really appreciate it (as do the lions)!
Come visit this summer and maybe you will be able to see our lions play with their new toys or some of the other enrichment items they love to play with.