America’s Teaching Zoo is the happy ending to each of its inhabitant’s unsettling story; when living in the wild becomes unsurvivable, a cage doesn’t seem so bad. “Happy,” the crocodile had been kept in someone’s bathtub. “Winston” the grey-horned owl had been run over by a car. “Candy” the albino corn snake stood no chance of camouflaging in the wild. Several of the tropical birds with lifespans of 50 to 80 years had outlasted their owners. Everybody needed a home – and America’s Teaching Zoo now provides them an attentive one.
Mostly run by students, the zoo welcomes families to learn about each animal and offers demonstrations throughout the day. During our 2-hour visit, we became acquainted with a hawk, a cheeky parakeet, an albino corn snake, parrot, pot belly pig, sugar glider, owl, albino pygmy hedgehog and Madagascan cockroach.
The zoo has areas dedicated to primates, tortoises, reptiles, birds, wild cats and equine animals. We learned something new about so many creatures. Speaking from personal experience, don’t tell the lion he’s handsome!
Tickets must be purchased online in advance.
Inspired by a gorilla who needs rescuing, Kathrine Applegate’s The One and Only Ivan is a great book to connect with the stories that brought each inhabitant to the Teaching Zoo. Ages 7 and up.
Free parking lot.