Posts Tagged ‘Karyn’

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.

Christmas 2011

December 26th, 2011

A fairly uneventful Christmas 2011 is over. I am delayed in getting this post up as the Blog was apparently down.

The day went like so:

my extra notes from Marilyn

I arrived at 5:15 AM.  Saturday, I asked Marilyn to “set me up well” for the day, and she did just that, along with the added instruction list. I did not know that Ladybelle Ferret “liked” warm water in her carnivore care food so that was particularly helpful to know.


I checked on the indoor animals and started to get everything ready for the day. It was very difficult to find the greenish rat snake in the dark -  he just looks like a branch. I didn’t find him initially, but later, once it was light, it was quite easy to notice the snake. (In the dark the snake is just another branch).

greenish rat snake portraying a branch

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I started feeding and cleaning the Carolina Wildlife animals. Einstein’s and Galileo’s exhibit STINKS, and if they weren’t so cute while they were eating (the noises they make in particular) I quite possibly would have left. I believe I disturbed Henry’s rest, as he seemed quite agitated with me. The muskrats were easy. I actually sat in their exhibit and rearranged the sticks and spread out food all over the place. (I got some video of them eating that I’ll post a different day). 

Kit, or Kat, I cannot tell the muskrats apart.

 


 

 


 


 

I was so hot working in the building that I just had to go outside (which in turn was freezing). The heat is usually in “setback” on Christmas but our new system works great. I went outside around 6:15 with the security guard. Thank goodness Jay had his flashlight. I gave Lightning his medicine and then moved on to the lemurs to check on them. I set up the ring tailed lemurs with breakfast,  locked all the red ruffed lemurs in their holding stalls, and returned to the building around 6:50.

Our Security Guard Jay.


 

 



 

 


 

All of the lights were now kicking on inside so I checked on the animals I hadn’t seen yet (that’s when I got the above photo of the greenish rat snake). The little garter snake and exhibit box turtle were looking right at me:

 

 

 

box turtle

 

 

 

garter snake

 

 






 


Our faithful volunteers – Karyn and Donald – had graciously and thankfully offered to help. Karyn arrived around 7:00 and started to care for the Education Animals and Donald came in at 8:00 and moved to the Farmyard.

Donald and Karyn

 

After moving through items inside, we stopped in the Farmyard to check on Donald and take care of some things there. Miss Piggy decided to show me her disgusting nose. (Yes that is poop. This time of year, pumpkin-eating-time, pumpkins seem to taste good any way, and in any form,  you can get them).  Lightning decided not to be a complete jerk for hoof picking (as he was yesterday).

No Kisses for Miss Piggy

 

In Explore the Wild, we finished cleaning and feeding the lemurs, checked and fed the wolves, and the same for the bears. Yona was sleeping on the side of the cliff and wouldn’t come down. Surprisingly, Virginia did come down to eat with Gus and Mimi.

Yona and Virginia

Yona

 

 





We worked our way back to the building to finish up the morning, which ended around 11:45. I was back for an hour at the end of the day to check on and feed the animals with my assistant (she’s much older now, but I love that picture of her with long curly hair). Although tiring, it was an easy day with wonderful weather, no broken dishes, and good help. Karyn even brought me a present!

 

My new name tag.

Join the conversation:

  1. Great Job Sherry, Donald and Karen- thanks for allowing the rest of us a day off :)

    Posted by Kimberly
  2. Einstein and Galileo are opossums

    Posted by Sherry
  3. Great behind-the-scenes post, Sherry!

    Posted by Wendy

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *

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.

Join the conversation:

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *

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

See You Later, Alligator

September 1st, 2011

The Museum has four alligators. Three are on exhibit in Carolina Wildlife and one is kept off-exhibit for education programs. When the alligators get too big to handle for education (or for their exhibit), we take them back to Alligator Adventure in SC to exchange for younger (& smaller!) alligators. The ones we bring back are usually yearlings (but if we can get a hatchling, we try for that too!) Here’s a photo essay of our trip on Aug 31 to make the alligator exchange.

Animal Dept Director Sherry is all set to set out with four alligators and equipment... at 5am!

We arrived in SC and met Travis (one of the animal keepers at Alligator Adventure). Here we are unloading the van. Notice the duct tape on the containers--safety first!

The four alligators that we returned were each inspected and placed in a tank area that is used for education. This video shows one of our alligators being taken from the travel container, inspected, and released.
YouTube Preview Image

Home, Sweet (New) Home

As they grow, the returned alligators will move to other areas of the facility... where they will have LOTS of friends. There are over 800 alligators at Alligator Adventure!

Time to pick the new alligators to bring back to the Museum!

Sherry holds all four new alligators in one handful! That's a big difference from how we had to handle the four we returned!

All four new alligators fit in half of one of the transport containers! Ready to go to their new home.

Back at the Museum, keepers were busy cleaning out and improving the exhibit in preparation for the new alligators. The alligators will be quarantined for a month, and then we will begin to use one of them for education programs. More pics of the new residents of Carolina Wildlife soon. Come visit them!!

Join the conversation:

  1. They are so tiny!

    Posted by kimberly
  2. Sounds like a fun trip!
    I like the shot of all the gators lounging around on the island.

    Posted by Ranger Greg
  3. That’s a LOT of gators in one location!

    Posted by Ashlyn

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *

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: Volunteer Karyn

June 25th, 2011

Karyn is a wonderful volunteer, although she prefers live in secret.

Karyn organizes our storage sheds

Karyn does so many different things to help us out.  She can do all of the typical volunteer tasks- cleaning in the Farmyard, taking care of the education animals, and preparing diets -and then some. We ( I guess the ’me’ part of ‘we’) often pull her off  regular volunteer tasks and have her step in to help out in so many different ways. She’s organized all our enrichment supplies, super cleaned and organized our hay barn in the farmyard, scrubbed out the bear moat, formulated vitamins for the aviary birds, written blog posts, and the list goes on and on.

Karyn, organizing enrichment items.

Her skill, enthusiasm, and commitment to the Museum is stellar. We even hired her for awhile when Kristen was pregnant and reduced her hours. She’s usually in volunteering on Monday and Friday mornings, and when she’s not “working” she comes by just to visit! 

Say hi if you see her around, or look for tweets from her- if you want to know more about this let us know in the comment section.

Karyn, with her grandaughter Ruby (and a baby degu)

Join the conversation:

  1. Sherry,
    I like all of the blogs from you, the animal keepers, the entomologists, Ranger Greg and also “Volunteer Karyn”….
    The picture of the chinchilla with the raisin is awesome and I’m pretty sure I have seen videos of the bears and farmyard animals taken by Karyn …..more, more, more!!! DJ

    Posted by DJ
  2. Karyn also keeps our home highly organized, including the zoo animal that is her husband!

    Posted by Mark Traphagen
  3. Volunteer Comment :

    Oh my!

    Posted by Karyn Traphagen
  4. Director Comment :

    Glad you like the Blog DJ.
    Nice to hear from you Mark!

    Posted by Sherry Samuels
  5. Karyn is awesome! I always look forward to working with her on Fridays.:)

    Posted by Marilyn

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *

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

Behind-the-scenes Special Program: Bear Feeding

March 26th, 2011

Every now and then the Museum offers special opportunities for Members to experience some behind-the-scenes aspects of life at the museum. This past Sunday, Animal Department Director Sherry Samuels led an enthusiastic group of parents and children down to the bear exhibit to help feed the bears (I tagged along and took some photos). Normally, visitors are never allowed to feed any of the animals! Each animal has a special diet which must be followed for their health and wellness. So this was a very special opportunity to not only observe and learn about the 5 bears who live here, but to also help feed them by tossing in the fruit, nuts, and vegetables that Sherry gave the participants. The bears gave quite a show and demonstrated many of the behaviors that the keepers regularly observe, but which members may not have seen before. Check out this schedule and then register to join us for a future Bear Feeding! The next one is a morning feeding on Sunday, April 17th.

The group walked down to the Bear Overlook after the museum closed.

The kids loved tossing in nuts, apples, sweet potatoes, and a few other goodies for the bears to eat.

Read the rest of this entry »

Join the conversation:

  1. great post and pictures, karyn. now i’m just dying to hear the ursula/donuts story from sherry.

    Posted by Leiana
  2. Director Comment :

    Read the second-to-last paragraph in the following Blog post to learn about the Ursula/donuts incident:
    http://blogs.lifeandscience.org/keepers/2010/05/10/creaturefeature-sherry-the-head-honcho/

    Posted by Sherry Samuels

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *

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

Christopher goes to School

February 25th, 2011

Christopher, our barred owl that lives outside next to Max the Steer and Chummix the Goat in the Farmyard, recently took a field trip to a local school to visit some second graders. He had a great time. Sherry (the Animal Department Director) gave the students all kinds of interesting information about him (you can read more about barred owls here and here). The students were able to meet several of our eduction animals during a special animal program (I went along with Sherry and it was a great deal of fun!)

Afterward, the students drew some amazing pictures of their favorite animal to visit their classroom. We love this particular one (see below) because it actually tells a story of what happened during the visit. Christopher was being held by Sherry, but he got a little nervous when the students made some noise as they moved from sitting on the floor to their desks. So, instead of sitting quietly on her arm, he spread his wings and tried to fly away. Of course he couldn’t really fly away because Sherry was holding the leash and the little leather jesses that he wears around his legs.

Here is the picture showing Sherry holding Christopher as he tries to fly (note Sherry’s purple Museum of Life & Science shirt, her long hair, and smiling face). I’ve also included a video clip (in slow motion) that shows what it really looked like!

Christopher the Barred Owl visits Second Grade

YouTube Preview Image

Join the conversation:

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *

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.

QuikPost:Yona bear update

November 11th, 2010

 

The picture above doesn’t do justice to Yona as her hair has grown back in since her surgery in September. We expect to be letting Yona back into the exhibit in just one week! It will be eight weeks since her surgery and she is doing really well. Her limp has mostly diminished and we’re really happy with how things have gone.

I was looking through some emails and blogs and came across a really great video that Karyn took back in the spring- before she volunteered or worked at the Museum!  Yona is  much larger now than she was in April when this video was taken! 

Go to the following post written by Erin:   http://blogs.lifeandscience.org/keepers/2010/05/05/how-enriching/ to take a look.

Join the conversation:

  1. I can’t wait to see her in the yard again! I hope the other bears didn’t get too accustomed to her absence.

    Posted by Leslie

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *

If you have an account on any of the Museum's blogs, you can sign in with the same login to contribute to the discussion.

If you don't have an account, signing up is free and easy.

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

What’s for Dinner?

November 2nd, 2010

NOTE: I’m temporarily working part-time in the Animal Department! I love wearing my official purple shirt. You never know what volunteering at the Museum will lead to.

If you think it is hard to figure out what to have for dinner at your house, imagine all the various critters at the Museum who want to eat. Preparing food for all the animals on exhibit and behind-the-scenes is a major task for the keepers and volunteers every day. Kristen recently wrote about the wolves diet, so I’m following up on the food theme and giving you a peak at what goes on in the Animal Department kitchen. I hope you enjoy this photo journal of some of the food preparation tasks for our animals.

With 5 refrigerators and 5 large freezers, we label them so everyone remembers what's inside.

The produce fridge has fruits and vegetables. The pink crate is full of sweet potatoes (we use LOTS of sweet potatoes).

Keeper Kimberly is chopping up some food for the animals. Some animals get food finely diced, others get chunks. Often we vary how the food is cut up for variation.

Read the rest of this entry »

Join the conversation:

  1. Very nice behind the Animal Dept. doors photo journey…

    Posted by Mike
  2. Great post, Karyn!

    Posted by Erin Brown
  3. Director Comment :

    I love the chinchilla-eating-a-raisin photo, although not as cute as when Jill pretends to be a chinchilla eating a raisin:

    http://blogs.lifeandscience.org/keepers/2010/05/21/quikpost-your-daily-cute/

    Posted by Sherry Samuels
  4. I agree. Jill’s photo is cuter! Any other photos of Keepers impersonating the animals?

    Posted by Karyn

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *

by , Keeper
I am most famous here in the animal department for "expanding" the barred owl exhibit, clogging the wolf pool, and splitting my pants. My other less notorious work, since 2003, includes keeping, purchasing our animal supplies, coordinating our volunteers, and managing our animal enrichment program.
Find me training the lemurs or in other various animal enclosures Monday through Friday, or at the grocery store on Wednesdays, when I shop for produce!

Kristen chimes in…

October 6th, 2010

…about the previous posts. ( I could have left comments on each post, but I’d rather abuse my blog authorship privileges!!)

Here’s our new ferret LadyBelle (previously named Tinkerbell)

Just how many ferrets named Tinkerbell do you think are out there in the world?

Karyn, our newest blogger, rocks as much as that landslide at wolves in the volunteer department!
I hope she’ll post her ‘Auggie in the sheep yard’ video!

I ( and by I, I mean Mikey) left Zoe turtle safely and securely closed up in one of our sweater box bins that we use for reptiles. As for how he made his way into Sherry’s office, all I can say (hum) is ” Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, heroes in a half shell. Turtle power!”

Join the conversation:

  1. LadyBelle is a cutie! But she’ll have to work hard to dethrone Auggie after his antics in the sheepyard. Here’s the link to the video:

    Posted by Karyn
  2. I think the turtle remembered how to get to Sherry’s office because he has turtle recall.

    Posted by Jeff
  3. You forgot to mention how many people it took to get that only mildly blurry photo of Ladybelle!

    Posted by Courtney
  4. Keeper Comment :

    oh yeah– thanks for reminding me! I had the camera on the “kids and pets” setting, but LadyBelle’s squirminess was still too fast! It took Courtney holding, me shooting and Adrienne performing wild antics to get the ferret to look at the camera, in order to get this below average shot! It doesn’t do justice to her cuteness!

    Posted by Kristen Pormann
  5. @ Jeff: lolz

    Posted by Erin Brown

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *

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

Volunteer Vox: The Scoop on Snake Poop

October 3rd, 2010

I was hoping to write my first Animal Department blog post about volunteering to help clean the bear pool. But, alas, the weather did not cooperate and the bear pool cleaning was postponed. But, I was already at the Museum so I decided to stay and help out with the off-exhibit animals. Maybe you didn’t know that there are many animals who live behind the scenes. These residents are usually used for education purposes (and sometimes they even get to go to birthday parties!)

Megatron

So, even though I speak fluent chicken with our Silkie chicken, love to hold the soft chinchillas (“Salt” and “Pepper”), and think our new opossum, Jessica, is just cute as beans, today I am going to tell you about my least favorite “inside” animal–Megatron. Megatron is our beautiful hissing Pine Snake (emphasis on the “hissing”). He’s a large snake (I think he’s our largest) and he’s been at the Museum for about 8 years.

Reptile Holding Room

Most of the animals around the Museum make quite a mess every day–sometimes many messes every day, like Max (the steer in the Farmyard), or Bugsy the (indoor) rabbit. Not so much the snakes. They don’t eat nearly as often, so you really have to look to see when they leave a “gift” of poop in their habitat. Usually you will smell it before you see it. But when they poop, they can really make a mess.

Megatron's feces (yuck... but oh, so helpful)

Read the rest of this entry »

Join the conversation:

  1. Woo hoo! Great to see you blogging here! Great post, gross pictures! One time (and by one I mean several) I changed Kristen’s desktop picture to a huge picture of Skeletor poop (the other big pine snake). It never gets old.

    Posted by Erin Brown
  2. Director Comment :

    Karyn, an animal department volunteer, will be making regular posts to the Blog. Look for many future posts from the volunteer perspective.
    THANKS KARYN!

    Posted by Sherry Samuels
  3. This is so awesome! Thanks for contributing Karyn!

    Posted by Leslie

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *