Zoo keepers share how they help animals beat the heat, especially during times with temperatures in the 100s.
Some of these animals come from Africa and have warmer climates, but hot is hot no matter where you are. That is why zookeepers at the Cameron Park Zoo design the habitat the animals live in to help them stay cool.
General curator for the zoo, Manda Butler, said each animal has temperature parameters in their areas which the zoo uses to gauge how hot or cold the area is.
The staff offers them cool zones, places for shade, built-in pools, and more. Butler said they experienced hot temperatures like this a few years ago, so they know what they are getting into.
“Six to seven years ago when we had the 60 days and the triple-digit heat, managing the animals at that time was a challenge," said Butler. "You have so many hot days ... staff that’s out. Checking on the animals and doing frequent checks on staff. We really need to work on making sure they can stay hydrated."
The zoo arranges habitats depending on the age of the animal as well, to provide resources to younger and older animals.
Butler said the morning is the best time to stop by for anyone planning to visit the Cameron Park Zoo.