It’s the final day of the Blogging from A-Z Challenge! Every day throughout April (except Sundays) I’ll be posting a range of ideas and tips for keeping your family entertained at home. It will include arts and crafts, games, learning ideas and imaginative activities for all ages. I thought it would be particularly useful while we’re all self-isolating or socially distancing, though it can be used for any time of year.
Letter “Z” is for Zoos. Many zoos, wildlife parks and aquariums are now offering live cams of their animals and special online events. These are a wonderful way for children to learn more about different types of animals, habitats and conservation issues.
I do not wish to support zoos that degrade and abuse animals. I have tried to only list those which:
- Have BIAZA or AZA accreditation, which means they maintain the highest standards of care and provide funding to conservation projects worldwide.
- Keep the animals in suitable and spacious enclosures.
- Are non-profit organisations which use the vast majority of their funding for conservation purposes.
- DO NOT cull healthy animals.
- DO NOT remove animals from the wild to keep in captivity.
- DO NOT allow interactions such as elephant riding or animal performances.
If you know that a zoo or wildlife park on this list is guilty of unethical practices, please report it in the comments and I will remove it.
UK & Ireland
- Chester Zoo has already held several virtual experience days where you can see all sorts of animals up close via live video. Follow their Facebook page to hear about the next event.
- Check out elephants, penguins, rhinos, ostrich, zebras and giraffes at Dublin Zoo.
- Go behind the scenes with a special video mini-series at Yorkshire Wildlife Park on Facebook.
- Visit the penguins at Wild Planet Trusts-Living Coasts.
- Drop-in on the donkeys at The Donkey Sanctuary.
- There are some lovely videos of sea life on The Deep Facebook page.
- Lincolnshire Wildlife Park shares regular updates about their parrots, tigers and other animals on Facebook.
- Prepare for a cuteness overload if you decide to visit Skegness Natureland Seal Sanctuary on Facebook.
- At Sandiego Zoo you can visit pandas, penguins, polar bears, apes, baboons, koalas, burrowing owls, giraffes, condors, elephants and tigers.
- You can see gorillas giraffes, chimps, elephants, leafcutter ants and rhinos at Houston Zoo.
- Smithsonian National Zoo & Conservation Institute offers naked mole-rat, lion, giant panda & elephant cams.
- Visit the lemurs, elephants, lions, bears and giraffes at Reid Park Zoo.
- At Chattanooga Zoo you can drop in on meerkats, snow leopards, tamarin and spotted genets.
- Kansas City Zoo has penguin, polar bear and Masai giraffe cams.
- Check out live cams of the jellyfish, coral reef and penguins at Monterey Bay Aquarium.
Have you visited any of these zoos, wildlife parks or aquariums in real life or virtually? What are your favourite animals to see?