It’s been almost a week since we opened the Urban Farm barn doors. As our animals are getting settled in their new home, it may have crossed your mind to wonder what’s involved with moving a couple of dozen pawed, hoofed, and winged creatures from their old living area to their new quarters. Well, let’s just say there is a lot of planning and preparation that goes into making a new space animal-ready!
Relocating the animals was a bit like a Noah’s ark parade. The sheep and goats were led to their new home with halters, rabbits and chickens traveled in crates, and the miniature piglets followed their keepers quite willingly into the new building.
Once the gang arrived and were introduced to their new habitat, the real work began. Observation is key. The zookeepers kept their eyes wide open and their senses alert as they observed how each and every animal was adjusting. Are the animals getting along with each other within their enclosures? Are they getting along with the animals beside them? Are they eating, drinking, and sleeping properly? How are they reacting to the public?
Having a well-thought out plan is essential but the animals will let you know if the arrangement is working or if it needs some tweaking. Luckily, the Urban Barn space is flexible and adaptable, so animals can be moved easily and stress-free to a different part of the building if needed.
Each of the different animals’ enclosures has the option to open up to the outside, so they can wander out for fresh air and sunshine, or laze about inside. Automatic water feeders ensure the water is always fresh and full. If for any reason an animal needs privacy, the enclosure can be tarped off from public viewing. The enclosures can also be opened up between each other, so the pigs can mix with the chickens and the ponies can say hello to the sheep. We have one big happy farm family!
One of the great things about the Urban Farm is that the zoo’s urban farmers will always be on hand during visitor hours to answer questions, muck stalls, replace feed, groom, and move animals to and from the outside contact yard. We look forward to seeing you soon! Yeehaw!