EnrichBits: A monthly look at animal enrichment Do you ever feel the need to rearrange the furniture at home? Or maybe, you just have to get out of town for the weekend, to be in a different place. Perhaps you always grab a different type of cereal at the grocery store, so you aren’t eating the same thing every morning, or maybe you splurge for this spring’s latest fashion, just because…it’s new.
Novelty is very much part of human life and here at the museum, we try to make novelty a part of our animals’ lives. A wild animal might spend lots of time exploring new territory and coping with changing conditions and we try to replicate this on a smaller scale for our captive animals. A new toy in the education opossum’s cage or a rearrangement of the trees in the barred owl exhibit are some ways we can use novelty to stimulate our animals mentally and physically.
Below is video from a few weeks ago when we gave our Copperhead a new log in his exhibit. He spent a good amount of time checking it out. Watch him climb on it and smell it (snakes use their tongues to smell!) I considered this excellent NOVEL ITEM enrichment. At first, I wanted to set this video to David Bowie’s “Changes” ( “ch,ch,ch, changes”) since changes are so important for our animals, but there are copyright issues 🙂 So, just hum it as you watch it!
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