LA Zoo DisneynatureBears
While in Los Angeles we were treated to a day out at the zoo! But it wasn’t just any zoo it was the Los Angeles Zoo and we had tour guides as well as carts to ride around in. It was a great behind the scenes look at the zoo! We met some amazing zoo keepers, animals and of course lots of zoo staff. I do have to admit going to the zoo without kids is a whole new experience for this teacher/mom/aunt/blogger!! We went to the zoo to help promote the upcoming movie Disneynature Bears that is coming to theaters April 18, 2014!
Our first stop was the Los Angeles Zoo Condor Rescue Zone where we met a Condor named Dolly. We were then taught a lot about the Condors and how they are on the endangered species list. They even have a great educational program for kids to learn all about Condors! Two of the coolest things I saw in this building was the whale carcass
model that condors feed on. As you can see my bear cub Amber from DisneynatureBears was along for the visit!! It was a rather large whole which surprised me a little bit. The other cool thing for kids to do is a hands on experience with a stuffed condor. Kids can perform surgeries, listen to the heartbeat and more in this hands on section. It was a very educational experience for us as adults so for kids it would be perfect!
STATUS: Andean condors are considered Near Threatened by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). Captive breeding programs (similar to the program for California condors at the Los Angeles Zoo) have been put into place, with relative success at releasing captive born birds back into the wild. Learn more about Condors on the LA Zoo Website!
We continued on the tour and saw giraffes, chimpanzees, hippos, rhinos, river otters, elephants and lots of great animals. Each enclosure was gorgeous and the animals looked amazing! I would have to admit that one of my favorite stops was the giraffes because they were close up as well as Masai Giraffes which are the darker spotted giraffes. I’ve been to lots of zoos before, but I hadn’t seen them! They are the tallest land mammal and are very impressive to watch!
While we were eating our lunches Amber made an appearance and we were able to enjoy a tasty lunch while watching the giraffes as well as the chimpanzees.
The Los Angeles Zoo is home to one of the largest chimpanzee troops of any zoo in the country. Built in 1998, the Zoo’s “Chimpanzees of the Mahale Mountains” habitat has been hailed by renowned primatologist Jane Goodall as one of the country’s finest chimpanzee habitats. Maintaining a healthy, diverse zoo population of chimpanzees is crucial to the survival of the species.
STATUS: Unfortunately, chimpanzees are currently on the endangered species list. Populations have decreased because of foresting, hunting, commercial exportation, and collection for scientific research. Although chimpanzees are protected in 34 national parks and reserves, laws can be difficult to enforce in remote regions.
HABITAT: Chimpanzees can be found all over Africa, from Senegal and Gambia to Uganda and Tanzania. They easily adapt to a variety of habitats including grasslands, tropical rain forests, and riverine and montane forests.
We even got to meet Rhonda the Rhino who is the only rhino who has ever survived cancer. The zookeeper was very knowledgeable and Rhonda has a definite fight to live in her!
We even got to meet the Black Bear Ranger who is 17 years old. His zookeeper also was very informative and this was one of my favorite interviews.
American black bears are the smallest and most prevalent of the bears native to North America. American black bears consume large amounts of food during the summer and fall, but they aren’t “true” hibernators because their body temperatures don’t drop dramatically, and they are still relatively alert. However, black bears still don’t eat, drink, or excrete waste during this time.
STATUS: American black bears are listed as Least Concern by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
HABITAT: American black bears live in various forests throughout North America and are found in 41 of the 50 United States. They mostly occupy temperate forests, but are also found in swampy or mountainous forested areas.
DIET: American black bears are opportunistic omnivores with a flexible diet. They eat grasses, fruits, berries, nuts, insects, human foods, and occasionally small vertebrates. During the summer, and even more so in the fall, these bears eat food high in protein—especially fruits, acorns, and nuts—to build up their body weight prior to hibernation.
“The Disney Store will contribute $1 to the NATIONAL PARK FOUNDATION for every BEARS plush purchased between now and 5/11/14. Get yours today!!
“DODOcase introduces a limited edition collection of iPad Air, iPad Mini and iPhone 5/5S cases featuring a custom BEARS design. 20% of each sale will go directly to the NATIONAL PARK FOUNDATION. Visit Dodocase to purchase and learn more.”