Posts Tagged ‘weather’

by , Keeper
I have been a keeper at the museum since May 2012, but I was an intern back in the spring of 2011. I am very passionate about animals and my favorites are native species with the exception of sloths. In my spare time, I am working on a Bachelor's degree with OSU online in environmental science. I have two dogs, a snake, and a cat.
I work Tuesday through Saturday and you will usually see me somewhere in Explore the Wild. I love giving keeper talks, so hope to see you at 2 pm for our meet the keeper programs in Explore the Wild.

Crazy Weather

April 28th, 2014

So far, Spring has provided us with some very crazy weather.  One day it is 70 degrees with a nice breeze then a cold and rainy day the next.  Mid-march brought us some icy conditions  then recently we had a hail storm pass through.


We make sure that we are constantly looking at the weather so that we can make sure to prepare the animal areas for whatever weather that is coming our way.  Which includes keeping heat lamps up at lemurs for the extra cold nights to providing the bears with ice treats when it gets really hot.

Sunny ETW

But when it is really nice, the bears take advantage of the situation by finding a nice spot to sun.

VA sunning


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  1. I especially love that bear picture!

    Posted by Wendy

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by , Keeper
Although a native tarheel, I came to the museum from Texas, where I taught Biology courses at a small college. In graduate school I studied the behavior and ecology of marine organisms (mostly crabs, lobsters and sea turtles).
You can find me in the Animal Department Monday-Thursday. Fridays I work for the Department of Innovation and Learning all day.

QuikPost: Stormy weather

November 12th, 2009

I came in from the wet, cold weather to find that Mudsy was having a tropical day in his exhibit. He is basking under the heat/UV lamp at a balmy 85 degrees. I’m a little jealous.

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  1. I love your website. So does Henry Michel ! :)

    Posted by gmaxlife

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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.

Cold, Cold, Cold!

January 4th, 2008

Well, it took a while but the cold weather has finally reached us. One of the main criteria for this job is to not only work on holidays but to also be willing to work in any sort of weather condition. As I was cleaning the farmyard yesterday morning, my trusty Friday adult volunteer told me that the thermometer at her house was at 15 degrees Fahrenheit when she left, and I believed her because that’s about how it felt. I was very appreciative that she had the forethought to bring a slotted spoon and tongs with her so that we could get the ice out of the water buckets without torturing our hands! Normally we would either have to dump all of the water (which isn’t in favor of conservation) or use our fists to break the ice and then brave having to pull all of it out with our bare hands. Lucky for me I got some awesome water-proof gloves for the holidays and now busting the ice with my fist is actually kind of fun.

I must admit, my first really cold morning in the farmyard when I was a part-time keeper four years ago seemed about as miserable as it could get. Although I had actually dealt with much worse weather before when I was in Bryce Canyon watching prairie dogs, somehow that morning just felt like the worst ever. Kent was the unfortunate keeper that had to put up with me as I could barely move due to my (seemingly) frozen feet and hands and overall pity for myself.

But it is amazing what your body grows accustomed to over time, and now four years later that same kind of morning isn’t too much different from any other if you take away having to blow your nose more often. Sure it is still cold, but you just get used to it, just like Kent had gotten used to it when I was new and wondered how he was managing so well on that brisk winter morning.

After working in all kinds of different weather conditions, I’ve learned what really is the worst weather to work in and it makes me appreciate the other things more. For instance, working while it is cold doesn’t seem nearly as bad when you compare it to working in the rain when it is just above freezing. I’ll take being cold over being wet and cold any day!

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  1. umm… some of us more weak knuckled keepers do use a rake handle to break up the ice instead of our fists :)

    Posted by kristen
  2. I remember being a volunteer in the farmyard on a day where it was windy and pouring down freezing rain and Kent said something along the lines of, “Wow, we can get you to do just about anything for free!” I haven’t had a day like that for a while since I work primarily indoors now. Though, I have had a problem with it being just a little too toasty inside on really cold days…

    Posted by Erin Brown
  3. When I lived in Fairbanks I learned a saying that I still believe in today, “No such thing as bad weather, just the wrong clothes” to which I add “and attitude!”

    Posted by Troy Livingston

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