why it's important
Enrichment is a way for keepers to encourage and stimulate natural behaviors in our animals through sight, smell, taste, touch, and interaction. It is as important to offer mentally and physically enriching activities for the animals as it is to provide nutritious, well-balanced diets.
Without sensory stimulation and engaging activities, we all can get bored or tired of our surroundings. By changing the environment, encouraging natural behaviors, and providing different physical experiences we can help reduce the possibility of this occurring.
Due to the COVID-19 virus, we are not currently accepting enrichment items. However, we welcome and appreciate financial donations or gift cards to hardware stores, grocery stores, and Amazon to purchase additional unused items to support enrichment and enhance the lives of our animals.
Some examples of how simple items are used for enrichment:
- Perfume and spices are distributed in an animal’s enclosure to provide both
olfactory and taste stimulation.
- Paper mache’ items are made and filled with treats to be hidden throughout an enclosure to encourage foraging, hunting and investigation.
- Blankets and sheets can be hung, knotted or shredded to create different environmental stimulation for our animals so that they can use it as bedding, something to swing on or something we can hide food in for them to discover.
Animal enrichment is important in keeping our zoo animals happy and healthy, and a great way you can enrich your furry and feathery friends at home.