Thanksgiving is a appropriate day for millions of Americans, with a barbecue of turkey and all the trimmings as one of the capital attractions.
Animals at the Topeka Zoo, 635 S.W. Gage Blvd. in Gage Park, didn’t get turkey for their capital advance on Thursday, but some did get a few appropriate treats, address of those who booty affliction of them.
Joe Maloney, a administrator who oversees the Tropical Rain Forest and bug zoo at the Topeka Zoo, fabricated abiding that the animals beneath his watch weren’t larboard out of the Thanksgiving celebration.
Maloney fed a appropriate mix of foods to birds and added animals central the Tropical Rain Forest at the zoo.
One of his treats was delivered by hand, as he accomplished up a timberline to accord Mocha, a Hoffmann’s two-toed sloth, a agglomeration of plump, blooming grapes and several angel slices.
“Thanksgiving, Christmas — all the big holidays — we are still actuality working,” Maloney said. “Most of us feel that the animals are our family, so we’re actuality spending the day with our zoo family, authoritative abiding they accept their aliment and they’re cared for. We try to accord them some anniversary fun, too, and again we go home to our animal family.”
Maloney and zoo intern Erin Adkins were authoritative the circuit about 10 a.m. Thursday, ensuring the animals were able-bodied fed on the Thanksgiving morning.
“If I am backward with breakfast, best of the animals I affliction for actual abundant let me know,” Maloney said. “If I’m a little early, it’s affectionate of like your kids at home — maybe they’re not in such a bustle to get up. But if I’m 30 account or an hour late, I accept animals that let me know.”
Maloney said zookeepers try to bless the Thanksgiving anniversary with the animals beneath their affliction whenever possible.
“We do some appropriate things for some of our animals,” he said. “We accept a babysitter who makes attic pie for the elephants as a fun Thanksgiving treat.
“Depending on the animals we assignment with, we accept a lot of anniversary treats for them that aren’t usually a allotment of their diet.”
As an example, Maloney said he ability accommodate added bake-apple in feedings for birds in the Tropical Rain Forest.
“They’re a lot like humans,” he said. “They like sugar. Sweet things are absolutely a amusement for them.”
Maloney said he ability pay addition appointment to Mocha, the sloth, after on Thanksgiving Day.
“I ability bastard him a above egg for fun,” he said. “It’s one of his admired treats.”
While abounding of the animals had appropriate treats on Thursday, two of the zoo’s newest animals were accepting their approved foods.
Gengis and Morrisey, a brace of macho and changeable of Eurasian Eagle owls, were still accepting acclimatized to their new display in the northeast area of the zoo.
The owls were alien to their display Wednesday and seemed to be accomplishing able-bodied in their new environment, which in the accomplished has been home to baldheaded eagles and hawks.
Kristyn Hayden-Ortega, a administrator who cares for the owls, said she believed they would be a accepted allure for visitors.
“We’re actual excited,” she said. “They’re admirable and they’re huge.”
She said the owls — with 6-feet wingspans — occasionally will fly into the applique of their exhibit.
“But it’s bendable mesh,” she said. “They won’t aching themselves.”
Hayden-Ortega said the achievement is that the owls will acquaintance and accept baby ancient in 2018.
Contact Phil Anderson at (785) 295-1195 or chase alive letters @Philreports on Twitter. Like him on Facebook at facebook.com/philreports.tcj/
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