Join our zoo community

A lovely deer park for the elderly

Discussion in 'Fantasy Zoos' started by Agalychnis, 15 Feb 2015.

  1. Agalychnis

    Agalychnis Active Member

    Joined:
    16 Jun 2014
    Posts:
    30
    Location:
    Fredericia, Denmark
    As part of my fantasy zoo Danish Nature Park, I would make a deer park aimed at being attractive to an elderly audience. The aim of the deer park would be not so much education as pleasing the growing body of Danish elderly with an exhibit qustom-made for their particular target group.

    To find out how to make just the perfect Danish zoo exhibit for seniors, I've followed a large Facebook group with Danish seniors exchanging pictures of their experiences in nature for about one year, collecting all the most popular (liked) photos. I've looked through thousands upon thousands of pictures until I finally felt I had a grasp on what an elderly Danish audience might adore.

    After analyzing the pictures I had collected, I knew quite a lot about what Danish seniors might love. Danish grannies (as a group; there were exceptions) lived up to almost every prejudice I had about them; they like beauty, niceness, cuteness and loveliness, they have a sort of ”the old days were much better” kind of thinking, and they even love flowers, deer, squirrels, songbirds, swans, beech forests and almost everything else I had expected them to love. They are one big exercise in Danish small-mindedness.

    My conclusion was that a small walk-through deer park would be the most pleasing exhibit for the Danish seniors. I would have a herd of fallow deer so tame the elderly and their grandchildren could practically hand-feed them, and perhaps a herd of highland cattle too. There would be several feeding stations for wild songbirds, especially Bohemian waxwings, Eurasian blue tits and European robins as I found these to be favourites of the seniors. The deer park would feature a beautiful lake containing wing-clipped mandarin ducks and a pair of mute swans, the lake being surrounded by a small, closed-canopy beech forest. Most of the small deer park, however, would be a bright and open woodland habitat: Grassy plains with oak trees.

    What do you think? Would all this fit together, and would it be walk-through friendly?

    I'm looking forward to hear your responses! :)
     
  2. savethelephant

    savethelephant Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    12 Jan 2015
    Posts:
    1,207
    Location:
    New York
    That sounds like an excellent idea! how much would it cost? Or would it be free?
     
  3. Agalychnis

    Agalychnis Active Member

    Joined:
    16 Jun 2014
    Posts:
    30
    Location:
    Fredericia, Denmark
    I think it would be a free addition to the general zoo; it would attract visitors and give people a nice day out free of charge, but the zoo itself would of course cost something (I actually haven't even thought of ticket price...).
     
  4. Batto

    Batto Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    3 Sep 2013
    Posts:
    1,112
    Location:
    Baltic Sea
    Make sure to have a feeding station with adequate food and a guide/keeper controlling the visitors. Unless you want the deer and birds to die of overfeeding and the pond to collapse due to hypertrophication.

    Highland cattle can be impetuous; you sure you want them running around senior citizens?

    And what about the granddads?
     
  5. elefante

    elefante Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    12 Aug 2009
    Posts:
    1,272
    Location:
    North Dakota, USA
    This sounds like a great idea but I wouldn't have the highland cattle around senior citizens. Maybe in a separate enclosure. What about including peafowl in the exhibit? They are noisy but would also be a pretty and hardy species.
     
  6. cloudedleopard

    cloudedleopard Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    13 Jul 2014
    Posts:
    551
    Location:
    Land of Liberty
    Well, what about pygmy goats or sheep instead of Highland cattle? Maybe zebus or mini donkeys would work. I would also include a "warm and fuzzy" animal such as a rabbit or a guinea pig.
    This is easily one of the best exhibits I have ever seen here on ZC! Keep up the good work :)
     
  7. cloudedleopard

    cloudedleopard Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    13 Jul 2014
    Posts:
    551
    Location:
    Land of Liberty
    A guide/keeper selling food would be great and food only being sold from certain hours each day. Llamas or alpacas would be good to take the place of the cattle, or sheep, goats, or even giant tortoises. I bet some Aldabras would be good for senior citizens. Well, the granddads would probably like the same things the grannies would like; maybe some rabbits or some domestic cats as well.
     
  8. Batto

    Batto Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    3 Sep 2013
    Posts:
    1,112
    Location:
    Baltic Sea
    Ever seen what goats do to trees when hungry and unchecked? Letting giant tortoises roam freely doesn't work in Danish weather most of the year. Depending on the zebu breed, they're just as tall as average cattle. As for miniature versions: a lack of size doesn't go along with a lack of attitude.
    Judging from the granddads I know, "fluffy & cute" isn't high on their list when it comes to animals. How to stop the cats from roaming?
    All in all, your suggestions @cloudedleopard turn the concept into an average, overfilled, unoriginal petting zoo, in stark contrast to the original concept.
     
    Last edited: 17 Feb 2015
  9. FBBird

    FBBird Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    15 Oct 2010
    Posts:
    1,329
    Location:
    Dorset, UK
    ....lovely....

    As a grandad, I'm having trouble with the concept that I might only appreciate fluffiness. As a practical animal keeper, I'm having trouble with the idea of unrestricted public feeding of big greedy pushy hoofstock. The only animals that are likely to remain non-aggressive on this regime are probably Fallow Deer, does only. One UK collection actually does this successfully.
     
  10. cloudedleopard

    cloudedleopard Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    13 Jul 2014
    Posts:
    551
    Location:
    Land of Liberty
    @FBBird, I bet the granddads would also appreciate the same thing as the grannies.
    @Batto, I meant the cats would be kept in a pen, rather than free-roaming, and goats would not have easy access to trees. As for the giant tortoises, those would not work.
     
  11. Batto

    Batto Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    3 Sep 2013
    Posts:
    1,112
    Location:
    Baltic Sea
    Cats in a pen? How lovely...
    How much you wanna bet?
    If the giant tortoises 'don't work', why mention them in the first place?
     
  12. cloudedleopard

    cloudedleopard Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    13 Jul 2014
    Posts:
    551
    Location:
    Land of Liberty
    Sorry Batto, I did not think that giant tortoises did not work, sorry.
    I meant like a yard with a fence with tame cats. Visitors would pass through a fence to pet the cats. That is what I meant. Could sheep work?
     
  13. zoogiraffe

    zoogiraffe Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    12 Sep 2007
    Posts:
    6,513
    Location:
    Middlewich,Cheshire U.K
    That would depend on what job you wanted them to do,as the hooves would stop them doing most jobs,that a human member of staff would be able to do!:p:D
     
  14. AverageWalrus

    AverageWalrus Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    29 Aug 2014
    Posts:
    279
    Location:
    Somewhere
    Some sheep have actually mastered the art of driving
     

    Attached Files:

  15. Zooplantman

    Zooplantman Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    23 Jan 2008
    Posts:
    2,946
    Location:
    New York, USA
    Were this anything other than a boy's fantasy I'd advise it is more likely to succeed if you had some respect for your target visitor
    In reality, I think you would encounter a problem so lumping elderly into a target group and designing such a zoo for them. Like designing a facility especially for 30 year olds. A diverse group.
     
  16. cloudedleopard

    cloudedleopard Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    13 Jul 2014
    Posts:
    551
    Location:
    Land of Liberty
    What do you mean?
     
  17. Zooplantman

    Zooplantman Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    23 Jan 2008
    Posts:
    2,946
    Location:
    New York, USA
    :p and :D suggest it could be read as a joke rather than taken literally
     
  18. cloudedleopard

    cloudedleopard Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    13 Jul 2014
    Posts:
    551
    Location:
    Land of Liberty
    Thank you, Zooplantman.
     
  19. zoogiraffe

    zoogiraffe Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    12 Sep 2007
    Posts:
    6,513
    Location:
    Middlewich,Cheshire U.K
    I am glad somebody got it,it would appear a simple joke by a simple person is too clever for cloudedleopard!!
     
  20. cloudedleopard

    cloudedleopard Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    13 Jul 2014
    Posts:
    551
    Location:
    Land of Liberty
    Anyway, what about a koi pond for the elderly? I bet that the elderly would enjoy a relatively tranquil environment in a form of a koi and lotus pond.