Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Summer Stroll Along the Boardwalk with a Keeper

Hello, critter friends.  In case you aren't aware, starting in June there is a special behind-the-scenes tour called Walk with a Keeper.  This tour has been very popular the past few summers and it will return this year with a few minor changes.  Every Tuesday morning, at 8:15, if you are so inclined, you can meet up with one of our animal keepers and take an early morning stroll along our boardwalk and learn a little bit about how we take care of our critters when they are going out on exhibit for the day. During the tour, you will get a glimpse of life as an early morning keeper.  The tour takes you through some of the service areas behind the scenes where you will see various animals waking up to begin the day.  You'll get a chance to see the otter slip gracefully into the water and swim over to the shore by the observation deck, eagerly awaiting breakfast that you may get to feed as he smiles up at you, with an expectant look.  Or you may get to marvel at the size of the beavers up close as they awaken to greet the day.  Wander over to the aviary and enjoy the peaceful serenity of the lake early in the morning.  You may get to see some of the wild critters that share the Museum's grounds with our own critters.  Stop by the outdoor aviary to feed some pelicans and ducks, then head on out for some more early visits with our animals.

There you are! where's breakfast?
 At the red wolf exhibit, set up an early morning treat to feed to the red wolves.  It's kind of yucky, but the red wolves love their breakfast.

hmmm....wonder what's inside?

Ewwww! meat! Tasty, according to wolves

oh boy! I just got a treat :)

 After a visit with the red wolves, your professional animal keeper guide will take you over to the other side of the boardwalk. You may get to see the bobcat go out for the day while you observe an early morning training session.  Or maybe giggle at the turkey antics as he greets the day when they come out to explore the exhibit for the day.  Along the way, you may see many of  our animals out and active in the coolness of the early morning. Each Tuesday, the tour begins at 8:15.  The tour is NOT included with Museum admission.  If you decide you want to stay a little longer, tickets can be purchased after the keeper tour at the front desk to visit the Museum for the day.  Due to the nature of the tour and preparation needed for the tour, tickets can only be pre-purchased before the day before the tour.  There WILL NOT be a tour if there aren't any pre-purchased tickets.  The tickets may be purchased at the desk or on the website BEFORE you come.  If you come as a walk-in, and you want to take this particular tour, you will be asked to purchase a ticket for Walk with a Keeper for another time, or there is a behind-the-scenes tour later in the day, but it is not the Walk with a Keeper tour that is conducted on Tuesday mornings. You will get to see some of the behind-the-scenes areas, but the tour doesn't focus as much on the keeping aspect of taking care of our critters.  When you go on the Walk with a Keeper tour, you will be with a guide the whole time, and the tour lasts about 45 minutes.  The cost of the Walk with a Keeper tour is $10 for members or $12 for non-members.  The tour goes rain or shine. In the event of extreme weather, the tour may be altered to include some indoor areas.