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All weather children zoo - Very Wild Asia

Discussion in 'Speculative Zoo Design and Planning' started by Jurek7, 25 Aug 2021.

  1. Jurek7

    Jurek7 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    19 Dec 2007
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    Location:
    Everywhere at once
    This is my idea of a children zoo set in a cold climate, and designed to be fully attractive in both summer and sub-zero temperatures. It focuses on animals of Asia and contains outdoor and indoor parts. I also tried to introduce many threatened species.

    Outdoor area: nomad camp of Mongolia

    This area is set on a basically large, flat, grassy field. The visitor area is set like a Mongol nomad camp, with yurts. There is a restaurant in several yurts. Another yurt has education information about wildlife conservation in Central Asia, especially Przewalski horse.

    There is a visitor show, featuring acrobatic horseback riding like shooting arrows from a horse, lassoing, picking objects in gallop etc, and archery demonstrations. There is also a falconry show, showing traditional Mongolian hunts with golden eagles and saker falcons, as well as egyptian vulture, steppe eagle and snowy owl. There are rides on bactrian camel, donkey and ponies. There are also chart rides on a chart pulled by yak or horses.

    The rides enter a huge grassy ungulate paddock, which partially surrounds the nomad camp. The paddock is so large that when people enter it under supervision, animals simply withdraw to the more distant part. It is shared by yak, Przewalski wild horse, urial and white-naped cranes. The latter have a small lake with an island. Overnighting yurts are set on the paddock itself. They are protected part-time by an electric fence. There is also public feeding of urial and yak from outside the paddock, through the fence.

    Petting zoo keeps goats, sheep, yaks, cows and rabbits. The barn of this corral replicates predator-proofed barns in Himalaya. There is also a tibetan mastiff dog used for presentations. These illustrate the conflict between farmers and big predators.

    Snow leopards have rather flat, but stony exhibit which is crossed by a visitor path going between giant boulders. It offers alternating viewpoints through a narrow but deep moat, piano wire and glass tunnel. Snow leopards especially like to rest on the glassy roof at the end, low over heads of visitors. This attraction is designed so that it entices the snow leopards with the best outlook of the surroundings and a heated pad built into the glass. The information tells about predator-herder conflict and avoidance. Additional information talks about wolves and shows wolf tracks, scat etc. set on the ground. Wolves are conflict predators more relevant to Western farming.

    Underground zoo is the area where visitors walk in a trench or a tunnel, and watch burrowing animals on the eye level, and in their burrows underground. Bobac marmot meadow is visible also from outside, and public can feed marmots under supervision. The exhibit is shared with corsac foxes. Little owls share an aviary with long-eared hedgehogs. Gerbils and steppe monitor lizards have two small exhibits. An aviary is crossed by a trench. Its back wall is loess erosion bank. It is shared by European sousliks, European bee-eaters and hoopoes.

    Indoor area: Indonesia

    This is a minimalistic tropical hall-like building with glass roof. Inside is a n all-year round restaurant overlooking large children playground themed as a rainforest. The kitchen is on the ground floor, and the dining area on the first floor.

    Children playground has floor of wood shavings, and the climbing structure is made of artificial trees, ficus trunks and artificial lianas similar to used in animal exhibits. There are lots of ladders, swings, slides in metal pipes set inside ficus tree trunks etc. Especially popular are tree houses on the climbing structure, some child-sized, some family sized, which are shaped like tree hollows and nests of eagles, orangutans, storks etc. In between the play structures are live ficus trees, palms, and live and artificial epiphytes: bird nest's fern, elkhorn fern and orchids. The playground is full of pictures of South-Asian animals and pictorial and short text explanation of concepts like symbiosis, ecological succession, mimicry or ecological niche. Random trivia are avoided. The topic is importance of forest, especially old trees and the danger of deforestation.

    In the tree trunks are small terrariums and aviaries for small animals, designed to be at the eye level of children: green monitor, leaf frog, stick insect, leaf insect and giant praying mantis. Larger aviaries, mostly overhead, are inhabited by prevost squirrels and swinhoe's striped squirrels.

    Children can also go through a giant hollow trunk of a fallen tree, and see reptiles, small mammals and invertebrates living in dead trees: burmese python, tokay gecko, scorpions, giant millipedes and rhinoceros beetles.

    There is a shallow pond under the climbing area, where children can wade and swim on rafts. There are pictures how deforestation pollutes rivers, and how wetlands and mangroves are important for wildilfe.Next is the koi pond, where children can feed the koi.

    A ramp along the building wall on the second floor-level allows overlook of the playground. It leads from the restaurant to the opposite side of hall, where is a very tall, floor-to-ceiling area for Sulawesi crested macaques. It is separated by glass windows, and viewable on several levels. In addition, macaques can leave the area and walk in the wire tunnel over the children playground, and there is a similar rope climbing tunnel for children parallel to it. Macaque area has grassy floor and real and artificial giant bamboo. Most noticeable is however a real bulldozer in the middle of the aviary with broken tree trunks, showing continuing destruction of the rainforest. Macaques can jump and play on the bulldozer. During the feeding demonstration, visitors can feed the macaques through the holes in the glass window. Otherwise, the holes are blocked.

    Near the macaques, the visitor ramp enters a walk-through bird aviary. It is the second tall, floor to ceiling aviary, visible also through glass on the ground level. Visitors can enter the aviary and feed birds with nectar. Educative materials tell about bird trapping crisis. Nearby is a children swing in a form of a hanging nest of baya weaver. Birds in the aviary are forstens lorikeets, eclectus parrots, Bali mynahs, pied starlings, nicobar pigeons, luzon bleeding-hearts and victoria crowned pigeons.

    The crocodile aquarium forms a glass wall in the restaurant, but can be also viewed from outside it. There live siamese crocodile, painted river terrapin and small south Asian fish. There is a small crawl-through underwater tunnel for children, and also a popup dome which lets children pop up on the crocodile beach.
     
  2. elefante

    elefante Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    12 Aug 2009
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    Location:
    North Dakota, USA
    Do you have other exhibit ideas? This is great!