Posts Tagged ‘Carolina Wildlife’

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.

New Songbirds

February 13th, 2014

We’ve got some new birds that will be heading to the Aviary in Carolina Wildlife soon. All the birds were found injured in Tennessee and could not be released to the wild with their injuries. They arrived at the Museum in January and have been behind the scenes in quarantine. None of them can fly, so look low in the Aviary in the next few weeks to see our new residents.

 

2 of our new mourning doves

the killdeer, and one of the mourning doves

 

our newest Robin has a red band on its leg.

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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.

When You’re Tired…

April 1st, 2013

…you sleep.

Henry does it better than most.

sleepy chuck

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by , Keeper
I'm extremely excited to be working at the Museum since October 2010. My favorite part of this job- besides working with the animals- is listening to all of the Keeper stories, I hear a new one each day. In my spare time I enjoy hiking, belly dancing, and vegan cooking.
I work Sunday through Thursday. I can be found mostly behind the scenes or training the Ring Tail Lemurs.

Animal Programs

January 28th, 2013

The Animal Department does several programs a week.

We have a daily 2pm Explore the Wild Keeper Talk, which changes between Bears, Wolves, and Lemurs each week. At these programs we talk to visitors about our animals, wild animals, what kind of food they eat, or any other specifics you’d like to know.

We also have a Farm Yard Program at 4:30pm all days but Thursday. At these programs we close the Farm Yard which includes feeding the animals and shutting down the barns, here you can ask Keepers questions and even help feed hay to a couple animals.

And a special Reptile Program on Thursday’s at 4pm in Carolina Wildlife. At this program we talk about our exhibit reptiles or any you have questions about and we feed our snakes and alligators.

Keeper Kent doing the 4pm Thurs Reptile Program

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by , Keeper
I have been working at the museum since 2003, and I feel fortunate to have a job where I can start my day with amazing animals surrounding me. I enjoy camping, hiking and rock climbing in my spare time when the weather is nice.
I work Tuesday through Saturday and spend a lot of time behind the scenes, but you might find me at a public program or feeding the farmyard animals in the afternoon.

Pumpkin enrichment

January 16th, 2013

In the fall we receive A LOT of donated pumpkins that are used in the animal department. Some animals eat them, some animals play with them, and some animals don’t really do anything with them.

Our muskrats really like to eat pumpkin, so we give it to them sometimes as enrichment or as a substitute for another vegetable in their daily diet. In an effort to use some of the many pumpkins that we had, I decided to do both.

We usually only give the muskrats pieces of pumpkin at a time, so I had to substitute several of their vegetables for one day in order to give them an entire pumpkin. I decided to clean it out and put their daily food inside.

I thought it would be best to only put half their food inside the pumpkin so that they wouldn’t fight over the pumpkin once they realized their food was inside.

So I placed the pumpkin, lid on, in the exhibit and scattered the remaining food for them to find (we do that daily.)

I thought they would probably go directly to the pumpkin to check it out, but they actually seemed  a bit apprehensive about it.

After several minutes of keeping their distance from the pumpkin and eating the scattered food around the exhibit, they started to creep up to it to check it out but would then run away.

I finally decided to take the lid off the pumpkin in an effort to help them realize that this big round orange thing was something good and yummy. At that point I had to go clean the rest of the exhibits, so I left them to continue checking it out. When I came back about 30 minutes later, I found this…

Yep, that’s right, the muskrats had dragged the pumpkin into their pool. It was floating upside down, waterlogged but surprisingly with most of the original food still in it. I drained out the water and placed it back on the floor of the exhibit with the rest of their diet still in it.

When I came back later I found the pumpkin moved back to the water’s edge, but this time there was a big chunk eaten from it.

Then I looked over at their den area and saw that they had taken the top of the pumpkin and put it at the window for everyone to see, along with some of their other veggies. They do this with their diet a lot, and it makes it pretty convenient for the visitors to get a look at all their food. I enjoyed putting this enrichment togther for them, and it was neat to see what they did with it throughout the day!

 

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  1. ….think this could be part of the 2013 New Year’s Resolution list….the Museum’s awesome keepers will help you overcome your fears of unusual veggies.

    Posted by dj

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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 been going on here

November 26th, 2012

We’ve been staffed sparsely for the past week so people could have some time off for the Thanksgiving holiday. I hope everyone had a wonderful few days with family, friends, pets, or alone. With not many keepers around, there’s been little time to sit and update you on life here. With that said, here are a few photos to share about some of the things that have been going on here:

I’ve been training Jessi to handle Phoebe, our education alligator.

Jennifer Armstrong (who helped smash up pumpkins during Pumpkin Fest 2012) checked out the trees over the fish stream and waterfall in Carolina Wildlife. We’re making a plan to clean them and add more.

 

I had a really bad splinter in my left thumb. I’m a lefty, and could not dig it out. Jennifer and Marilyn tried, but they were unsuccessful. After a few days, Annie was able to get it out for me –  it was about 4 mm long and I was relieved to have it out.

Annie gets out my splinter

I’ve been preparing for an emergency drill –  this one will focus on a bear escape/recapture. Kristen found this bear and donated it to the training cause. Big Big Bear lives at my house. ( I have another bear named Big Bear and this bear is bigger than the other, hence the name Big Big Bear)

Big Big Bear. I bring her in for drills.

And finally, a little quiz for you. Below is the picture I took when we released our new male red wolf, 1414, into the wolf exhibit. How many of the people below can you name?

 

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  1. (Left to right) Aaron, Marilyn, Kent, Jessi, Sarah, Jill, and Katy. I’m just unsure about the three at the fence.

    Posted by Ranger Ro
  2. Director Comment :

    that’s ’cause the three at the fence were volunteer Max, and Vet Tech Anna and her husband. Well done Ro- thanks for playing.

    Posted by Sherry Samuels
  3. Last time I helped with bear escape training, Kent wanted to use the tranquilizer on me…best training ever..

    Posted by Mike Fink
  4. very nice post, i surely enjoy this wonderful site, persist in it

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by , Keeper
I have been working at the museum since 2003, and I feel fortunate to have a job where I can start my day with amazing animals surrounding me. I enjoy camping, hiking and rock climbing in my spare time when the weather is nice.
I work Tuesday through Saturday and spend a lot of time behind the scenes, but you might find me at a public program or feeding the farmyard animals in the afternoon.

QuikPost: hoarders

April 19th, 2012
YouTube Preview Image

The last couple of days we have been watching our muskrats closely because we were concerned one of them may have been acting a bit lethargic. So you can imagine what a pleasant surprise it was to see them both running around the exhibit early this morning!

Most of our visitors that come regularly usually only see our muskrats sleeping in their wooden house. That’s because they tend to be most active in the morning (at least for the time in which we are here), after they have been fed by the keepers. Our muskrats aren’t too keen on getting close to the keepers, so they wait until we leave the exhibit and then come out to see what kind of food they have been given for the day. Then they get busy eating and hoarding! Yes, that’s right, our muskrats will stock pile their food in their wooden house. Which is actually quite smart of them, because it means if they wake up during the day and are hungry, they have their meal right next to them instead of having to go out into the exhibit and bring it back.

I managed to get some of the hoarding on video, and it’s quite cute! Clearly, one of the muskrats likes to collect the food in the house, while the other muskrat has a specific spot at the edge of their pool where he enjoys eating.

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by , Keeper
I'm extremely excited to be working at the Museum since October 2010. My favorite part of this job- besides working with the animals- is listening to all of the Keeper stories, I hear a new one each day. In my spare time I enjoy hiking, belly dancing, and vegan cooking.
I work Sunday through Thursday. I can be found mostly behind the scenes or training the Ring Tail Lemurs.

Hungry Anyone?

October 7th, 2011

 

The above pictures are prepared food for the animals inside the main museum building, which include the animals you see in Carolina Wildlife as well as the animals in the Education Holding Room (click here to see all of their pictures) and a few of the reptiles from the Reptile Holding Room. The other reptiles eat twice a week on Monday and Thursday.

Join us every Thursday afternoon at 4pm for a reptile program in Carolina Wildlife- we feed the snakes and alligators and answer all of your questions.

Check out Karyn’s post- What’s For Dinner to get a picture tour of the fridges, freezers, and food prep.

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by , Keeper
I have been working at the museum since 2003, and I feel fortunate to have a job where I can start my day with amazing animals surrounding me. I enjoy camping, hiking and rock climbing in my spare time when the weather is nice.
I work Tuesday through Saturday and spend a lot of time behind the scenes, but you might find me at a public program or feeding the farmyard animals in the afternoon.

The thrills of working around construction….

September 19th, 2011

You may have seen the previous post that Karyn wrote about new flooring being installed on our support hall. Well, this week has been difficult for the keepers because everything is out of place and out of whack. However, even in light of the craziness that we are currently enduring, people are working through it like champs. In fact, we are trying to find amusement in the chaos wherever we can. The fact that we have to crawl through the small viewing windows of our snake cage exhibits just to gain access to an entire hall of animal exhibits is probably one of the most humorous (if you’re watching someone else crawl through) and annoying (if you’re the one doing the crawling) things that we are having to deal with. Here’s some pictures of us having some fun this morning as we work!

Our amazing volunteer, Annie, attempts to climb through the snake window first thing in the morning to get fresh water for one of our education critters.

Ding ding! Order up at the service window!

I decided to see if I could fit through the top window. Annie figured this was the perfect opportunity to get back at me for the photo I took of her!;)

"Hmmmmm... how should I go about this?"

 

At this point, I thought I might actually be stuck... but that would be way too embarrassing to ever live down with my co-workers, so I squeezed through.

It was THIS position that finally made me realize what a bad idea this was, and that I should have gone back instead of forward. Ouch!

Whew! The worst is over!

I decided to demonstrate another way to go through the windows on my way back out.

So far, so good...

OK, a bit hard on the knees and shins right here. I'm too old for this!

But while I'm here, I might as well get my exercise in for the day and do some push-ups. Hey, no gym tonight!

 

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  1. We told you it was construction but really, we just wanted to try some new keeper enrichment. :-)

    Posted by leslie
  2. I love that all of us have our unique ways of getting through those windows. I like going through feet first. It reminds me of how all of the bears go up/down the cliff differently.

    Posted by sarah
  3. Crack me up Marilyn, believe it or not you aren’t the only person to try the top window, however Intern Matt was a bit more graceful than you :)

    Posted by kimberly

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by , Volunteer
I like volunteering to work with the animals and the Keepers (both are quite exciting and entertaining). I speak several languages including chicken. In another life I teach physics, but mostly I just love to learn (anything!) and be outdoors. When not volunteering I like to watch the bears and photograph around Explore the Wild. Follow me on Twitter @ktraphagen

Wondering why Carolina Wildlife is closed this week?

September 15th, 2011

Are you wondering why the doors to Carolina Wildlife are locked this week? As you peek in through the glass, can you see that something looks different? These photos will give you a glimpse behind-the-scenes to see why the indoor animal exhibit is closed… but not quiet!

This is the Animal Department hallway. The floors are being replaced, so everything (and I mean EVERYTHING) had to come out of all the rooms on the hallway.

These are our Education animals. Instead of their nice roomy Education Holding Room (the EHR), they are all out in the Carolina Wildlife exhibit where visitors would normally be looking at the muskrat, the opossum, or the water turtles.

All the shelves and supplies had to move out too. These shelves have enrichment items and cleaning supplies. They are set up in front of the owl exhibit! The owls are very confused about everything that is going on.

Even all the freezers and refrigerators that we use for food preparation for the animals had to come out of the hall. These are up against the wall of the muskrat exhibit. That's our new intern Matt doing some food prep!

All the dishes had to be moved out of the kitchen too! Aaron is trying to keep everything neat and tidy.

Here's another look at some more freezers in front of Henry's exhibit (he's our woodchuck) and across from the Aviary. You can see why there's no room for visitors this week!

By the end of the week, we will need to walk all the way through the Museum and outside to come back in the other entrance to the hallway to put food in a prep fridge. We’ll also need to have some keepers climb through the cutouts that the snake exhibits use so that they can access the back of the exhibits (for owls, snakes, etc), sink and equipment which we won’t be able to use the door to access. I may have to post a picture of that! Stay tuned!

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  1. What does Henry think of his new view?

    Posted by Shawntel

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by , Keeper
I'm extremely excited to be working at the Museum since October 2010. My favorite part of this job- besides working with the animals- is listening to all of the Keeper stories, I hear a new one each day. In my spare time I enjoy hiking, belly dancing, and vegan cooking.
I work Sunday through Thursday. I can be found mostly behind the scenes or training the Ring Tail Lemurs.

Henry Explores Carolina Wildlife

September 9th, 2011

Look at that shaved belly, Henry was recently neutered

This is Henry our Woodchuck otherwise known as a Groundhog.  The other morning, before we opened, Keeper Sarah gave Henry some much needed exercise time, in the people area of Carolina Wildlife. He enjoyed running back and forth, chasing us when he could, and checking out the exhibits.

Keeper Sarah and Henry run around

Keeper Sarah protecting her ankles

Squeezing his way between the bench and the wall to climb on top of the bench

Success

Then Keeper Katy came out and gave Henry a little tour of the snake exhibits.

Henry looks at Black Rat Snake with Keeper Katy

"Look Henry this is a Pine snake"

Henry climbs a step to see the Corn Snake better

Henry is one of our more active inside animals so we make sure to give him lots of enrichment, check out these other posts about woodchuck enrichment: raisins anyone and interview with a groundhog

 

And my favorite picture:

Henry and the fish check each other out

 

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  1. love it!

    Posted by Kristen
  2. Wow…I’m signing up for the December 18. 2011 “Behind the Scenes Tour” to see Henry! Didn’t he also predict the Superbowl winner?!

    Posted by DJ
  3. What a great exercise time and location for him! Much more fun than the hall:)

    Posted by Ashlyn
  4. Keeper Comment :

    Keeper Jill often gives Henry this special exercise time and Sonny as well

    Posted by Kimberly Lawson
  5. Keeper Comment :

    He did indeed predict the winner…Not sure if he will be hibernating this football season so we may need to choose someone else.

    Posted by Jill Brown

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