From December 6, a collection of gifts for the charges of the Warsaw Zoo starts. Among others, polar bears, gorillas, chimpanzees, meerkats and lemurs are waiting for gifts.
Gifts can be left every day from 6 to 31 December from 7 am to 7 pm at the security staff at the two entrances that are currently open: from Ratuszowa Street and from the side of Gdański Bridge. Animal keepers urge the items to be brought clean and packed in a plastic bag or sack.
“Maybe during the holiday preparations we will be able to find something that will satisfy the polar bears Gregor and Aleut, gorillas Azizi, Bwana, Viking, chimpanzees Lucy, Szymon, Frodo, lions Sofia and Zulus, ring-tailed lemurs, meerkats and other animals? there are as many as 13,000 of them – including fish and invertebrates “- encourages the Warsaw zoo.
Elephants are waiting for treats
What gifts are animals waiting for? As the zoo explains, it depends on the species of animal, and even the specific individual and the ideas of the keepers. Some of the gifts collected will be used directly as toys, others will be used to create structures on which you can walk or hide delicacies there. The gifts that the zoo residents are waiting for are: new blankets, large, undamaged wicker baskets, artificial flowers to decorate aviaries, new plastic barrels or barrels of food products, undamaged and clean plastic buckets and buckets, delicacies for elephants: jelly, coconut shavings, corn crisps, honey, jams, raspberry juices, oatmeal, spices, peanuts, agar.
Why pets need toys and other items? As the zoo explains, the answer is the term “enviromental enrichment”, literally: enriching the environment, which is essential for the welfare of animals in human care. “In practice, this means a fairly wide range of activities consisting in: organizing the enclosure space so as to ensure the animals’ safety, comfort, hiding places; diversifying the decor; organizing time, as well as providing the stimuli necessary to maintain good physical and mental form” – states in the release . And he adds that the basis for the proper use of items is “knowledge of the biology of a given species, as well as adapting activities to a specific individual – his age, sex, health condition, as well as other factors, e.g. individual preferences, the occurrence of heat or breeding season, and even the season of the year. “.
Toys help them to be active and train
Zoo keepers remind you that in nature animals spend most of their time foraging – herbivores look for food resources, predators track prey, hunt, eat, and even hide food for later. They need to find and reach water sources. The remaining time is spent on finding a place to hide or rest, and sleep. They don’t have much time for other activities and boredom. In the conditions of a zoo, all concerns about food and a place to hide are out of date – the keepers not only make sure that the animals have a place to rest and eat, but also that the diet is well-balanced. So the animals have a lot of time for other activities. “That is why the zoo organizes enrichment for its wards, e.g. food (especially delicacies) is hidden in various nooks and crannies, fragrances are sprayed or aromatic herbs are scattered, toys are constructed that require physical activity and mental training. For the enrichment to fulfill its task in 100%, they must be varied and regularly changed “- they indicate.
Main photo source: UM Warsaw