by , Keeper
I've been at the museum since 2010. I love to read and learn; it's rare that a day goes by at work when I'm not suppressing the urge to spew out something cool I just learned to my coworkers. In my spare time, I play the 'cello, snuggle my dog and reminisce about snowmen and Nor'easters.
I work Sunday through Thursday. You can find me raking the Farmyard in the morning or training the donkey and dwarf goats in the afternoon.

Goat Coats

March 15th, 2014

Polar Vortex 2014 brought bitter cold air and lots of snow and ice to Durham. Most of our outdoor animals were snug and warm inside their holding areas or tucked into huge piles of hay to wait out the winter weather, but some of the farmyard residents were still just plain cold. We added a big heat lamp in the goat stall and would lock them inside but it still wasn’t enough to keep our two older boys toasty when it was 10 degrees out.  Even Lightning, the donkey, was shivering on the coldest of days.

How else do you keep a tiny herd of African animals warm?

GOAT COATS!!

 

and a donkey coat, too.

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by , Director
I've been at the Museum sooooo long - longer than many of our interns have been alive. I do a little bit of everything as part of my job: care for the animals, work with the keepers and other staff, spend time with guests. Lucky me!
I spend a lot of time behind-the-scenes, or here after hours, but if you really want to see me, you'll have to sign-up for a behind-the-scenes program.

Get Off my Back

March 12th, 2014

Name that bear and what is stuck on its fur!

 

Join the conversation:

  1. Hard to tell can’t see his/her face . So let’s go with Gus and a bunch of Bear Chow stuck to his fur.

    Posted by HRvdB
  2. Director Comment :

    You’ve got half right HRvdB!

    Posted by Sherry Samuels
  3. Half right, okay I still think it’s Bear Chow. Which bear was the issue, don’t think it’s Virginia, so let’s go with Mimi then.

    Posted by HRvdB
  4. Director Comment :

    ooooohh… so close, but again, only half right.
    You should now know the answer -assuming you’re right about the chow (which you are).

    Posted by Sherry Samuels
  5. Okay here goes: Yona and Bear Chow. If this guess is wrong, then I owe a bear an apology on my next visit to visit my favorite keeper.

    Posted by Hrvdb
  6. Director Comment :

    YAY!. I was impressed you got the bear chow on the first guess. Yona had slept on a pile of chow in the house and it stayed stuck on her for a bit.
    Thanks for playing!

    Posted by Sherry Samuels

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by , Director
I've been at the Museum sooooo long - longer than many of our interns have been alive. I do a little bit of everything as part of my job: care for the animals, work with the keepers and other staff, spend time with guests. Lucky me!
I spend a lot of time behind-the-scenes, or here after hours, but if you really want to see me, you'll have to sign-up for a behind-the-scenes program.

Spotlight: Autumn Lindey

March 9th, 2014

When I started writing this post it was November. Back then my first thought was to say ” Meet Autumn, our newest Keeper”. We’ll, it’s now many months later and besides from not being true it’s not what I think of first anymore. She’s such an entrenched member of the team it seems like she has been here a loooong time.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Autumn started with us just about a year ago when she and her husband relocated to NC.  We were thrilled to have her as a skilled and interested volunteer a couple of days each week. She even taught summer camp at the Museum. Her previous experience at the Akron Zoo, Philadelphia Zoo, and the Cleveland Museum of Natural History make her a great addition to our team.

For awhile she was working weekends, but now she has moved to a Sunday-Thursday schedule. Her fellow Saturday keepers were very sad to see her leave, as she is well-respected and valued by the team. She’s  always willing and able to help with whatever the task.

Look for her out and about. Currently she spends most of her time in Explore the Wild, so the 2:00 Keeper Talk may be your best chance to chat with her.

Gordon and Autumn

 

 

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by , Director
I've been at the Museum sooooo long - longer than many of our interns have been alive. I do a little bit of everything as part of my job: care for the animals, work with the keepers and other staff, spend time with guests. Lucky me!
I spend a lot of time behind-the-scenes, or here after hours, but if you really want to see me, you'll have to sign-up for a behind-the-scenes program.

What’s behind the closet door…

March 6th, 2014

We have a couple of closets in the animal department. One of them we refer to as our “cleaning closet” and this is where scrub brushes, mops, disinfectants, and the like are kept. The other one is called our “tool closet”.  This closet is in our office area and our work scheduling calendars are on the door. Inside, as I am sure you can imagine, we keep tools (and more: tape, extension cords, locks, tarps, bungees, cable ties… this list goes on and on).

Tool Closet

I walked into the office last week and found this. Katie is sitting in the closet eating her lunch. Evidently this is the best place to get WiFi reception!

Intern Katie in the closet eating lunch!

I have never before known someone who purchased and ate Uncrustables!

Katie’s lunch the second day I found her in the closet (along with ravioli)

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by , Director
I've been at the Museum sooooo long - longer than many of our interns have been alive. I do a little bit of everything as part of my job: care for the animals, work with the keepers and other staff, spend time with guests. Lucky me!
I spend a lot of time behind-the-scenes, or here after hours, but if you really want to see me, you'll have to sign-up for a behind-the-scenes program.

Disturbing news for lemur conservation

March 3rd, 2014

The American Association for the Advancement of Science reported troubling news for lemurs in the February 21 issue of their Science Magazine. The report states that lemurs the most imperiled
group of large vertebrates.

Read the full article: Schwitzer et al 2014_Science-Averting Lemur Extinctions.

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by , Keeper
I graduated from NCSU(go pack) and have worked in the animal department for about 8 years. Some of my favorites include ferrets and birds. I am also known for my weird obsession with Boba Fett.
I work Tuesday-Saturday in either the Farmyard or inside the main building behind the scenes.

Dream a little dream

February 28th, 2014

Have you ever wondered if animals dream?  There’s no doubt in my mind they do and a while ago MIT did research and found out that animals do indeed dream. Here is the article.

Often I wonder what our animals could be dreaming of. Below is a guess of mine:

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by , Keeper
I've been at the museum since 2010. I love to read and learn; it's rare that a day goes by at work when I'm not suppressing the urge to spew out something cool I just learned to my coworkers. In my spare time, I play the 'cello, snuggle my dog and reminisce about snowmen and Nor'easters.
I work Sunday through Thursday. You can find me raking the Farmyard in the morning or training the donkey and dwarf goats in the afternoon.

The Interns Make Friends With Max

February 25th, 2014

Our Spring 2014 interns, Katie and Jill, got to spend some time in the farmyard with Max and the “Max Scratcher”

YouTube Preview Image

Join the conversation:

  1. what’s the “max scratcher” made of?

    Posted by sherry
  2. Keeper Comment :

    It’s an old PVC perch core that has a metal comb attached to one end.

    Posted by Sarah Van de Berg

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by , Keeper
I've been at the museum for many years now. I spend most of my time behind-the-scenes in the Vet room. You might catch me out and about with one of our many veterinarians checking on the animals.
When I'm not hanging out with one of our vets I'm usually in the Vet room running a fecal looking for intestinal parasites! If I'm not up to my elbows in poo you'll find me at the computer updating the health records of our animals or preparing for Vet Rounds.

Snow Pictures 2014

February 22nd, 2014

More snow pictures of the most recent storm to hit NC.

 

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  1. nothing like a goat in a coat.

    Posted by sherry

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by , Keeper
I graduated from NCSU(go pack) and have worked in the animal department for about 8 years. Some of my favorites include ferrets and birds. I am also known for my weird obsession with Boba Fett.
I work Tuesday-Saturday in either the Farmyard or inside the main building behind the scenes.

Jackson Pollock

February 19th, 2014

*NOTE* This blog was scheduled for the 28th of January, but it kept getting moved!!! Pretend its January 28th.

What does this animal blog have to do with Jackson Pollock?  For starters, its his birthday today  and for those of you who have never heard of him, he is well known for “drip” style painting.

Photo

Personally, I am not much of a fan of abstract art. I tend to like the more traditional Baroque style like Rembrandt.

The Nightwatch

Photo

Then I was reminded that we have some famous artists in our midst around the department who are the more abstract art type and would appreciate Pollocks birthday.

Franklin

Box Turtle “B”

Galileo

 

I have to say I would rather have a Franklin adorn my walls at home than a Pollock.

Join the conversation:

  1. I treasure my animal art – Thank you Jill and Sarah!

    Posted by Wendy
  2. I agree with you Jill, like the traditional stuff myself.
    And, along with you, I would much rather have a Franklin, BT “B,” or Galileo than a Pollock.

    Posted by Ranger Greg

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by , Keeper
I've been at the museum for many years now. I spend most of my time behind-the-scenes in the Vet room. You might catch me out and about with one of our many veterinarians checking on the animals.
When I'm not hanging out with one of our vets I'm usually in the Vet room running a fecal looking for intestinal parasites! If I'm not up to my elbows in poo you'll find me at the computer updating the health records of our animals or preparing for Vet Rounds.
Tags: , ,

Interns Learn A Lesson

February 16th, 2014

Being an Animal Keeper requires you to carry certain items with you throughout the day. One of these is a large key ring full of keys. Every once in awhile you will stumble upon a set of keys that have lost their owner. When this happens usually the Keeper who found the keys will relocate them to make it even more difficult for the owner of the keys to find them. This is exactly what happened when a certain Keeper (who shall remain nameless) found a set of unattended intern keys.

Found Keys

Join the conversation:

  1. Great to see the dedication and awareness the keeper who found the keys used to ensure none of the Museum’s animals could be harmed by the loose keys after they were so diligently placed out of harms way.

    :)

    Posted by HRvdb
  2. Yes, exactly

    Posted by Jill

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