Monday, August 4, 2014

One More Week!

I can't believe my internship is ending so soon! I wish I could stay longer but I suppose I should go and finish schooling and get my degrees. I'm slowly saying my goodbyes to my favorite animals and keepers. 

 Dolly my most favorite giraffe in the ENTIRE world is being super cute when she sees me. She gets all excited and I realize that I'll most likely have separation anxiety when I have to leave her and the zoo. Her target training is going great! She's come a long way from being terrified of the target pole to targeting with authority (even if she's a little slow).

My wildlife shows let me spend quality time with "Pudge" the Lesser Madagascar Hedgehog Tenrec and some of the lizards and snakes between shows. I really noticed a change in my public speaking from before I started doing shows and I feel like I improved a lot.

"Luna" is the adorable Eastern Striped Skunk. She's just a baby and is super cute. We get to spend time getting her accustomed to people. Darn, the intern life is a tough one sometimes. She's had her scent glands removed so she can safely be used as an educational animal, and I only wish she was a little bit older so that I could have maybe worked with her more.

Tiger cubs! The tiger cubs are now out on exhibit in the mornings to get them used to it. They're extra cute and so much bigger than how they were when I started. I can't wait to see them when they're all grown up! It's crazy to see how fast animals grow; both the tiger cubs and the baby American Alligator "Peanut" have visibly grown in the time that I've been here, and they still have years of growth left.

My enrichment project ended up making a cube out of fire hose, some hardware, and an extremely durable ball that is by itself often used as a toy. The cube itself took about an hour to make, with a considerable portion of that spent sawing the lengths of hose to the right size. It's intended for one or both of the elephants to play with, so hopefully they will enjoy it.

The elephant keepers finally sent me photo evidence that the elephants played with it after I finished my internship. One of the elephants tried to eat it, and the other one stepped on it. They've never seen a boomer ball that warped before, so I hope the elephants had fun!

The tiger keeper sent me this picture of "Rojo" the Sumatran tiger having a grand time playing with the fire hose ball/cube. He really liked that it smelled like elephants!