Today ZooAmerica celebrates Founder’s Day in honor of the 100th anniversary of a zoo in Hershey. There are pony rides, food deals, animal enrichment and talks, and a history talk. The animal species being concentrated on today are the founding members of Milton Hershey’s first zoo including the elk, prairie dogs, and the bears. There’s a barbershop quartet strolling around the zoo singing- everything combined has created a very fun atmosphere even with the occasional bursts of rain.
Johnny and June have been on exhibit for just 4 days now- our new 7 month old white-tailed deer. They join the single older doe and 3 turkeys. They came to us from a breeder in Cumberland County and spent their first 30 days in quarantine getting tests done and fecals taken to make sure they’re good and healthy. Johnny has little nubs for antlers already and weighs in around 72 pounds. June is very small with the faintest hint of her fawn spots and is only 40 pounds.
When they were released onto the exhibit on Thursday, they were a bit skittish, but explored and found the adult doe. They went over and tried to nurse from her, which she did not allow. The buck followed the turkey a bit, which was ironic since our male turkey used to spend a good portion of his day chasing the other deer.
The deer exhibit is right next to the bear exhibit, which had great potential to scare the deer once they saw the bears for the first time. When the deer saw them, they were carefully watching them but did not seem overly stressed. Today is the first day I’ve seen all three deer down in the same area- they’re all acclimating to each other and the exhibit quite well! They are even getting used to the monorail train traveling above their exhibit and enjoying treats of apples, banana peels and peaches.
Pictures will be posted soon!