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Another new member

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by Rookeyper, 26 Jan 2007.

  1. Rookeyper

    Rookeyper Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    26 Jan 2007
    Posts:
    279
    Location:
    Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA
    Hello everyone. I'd like to introduce myself. I work as an area manager for the Australian section of the Fort Wayne Children's Zoo in northern Indiana in the US. I've worked here for 20+ years and thoroughly enjoy the Australian animals I've worked with over the years. We've housed Eastern grey kangaroos, Tassie devils, echidnas, striped possums, wombats, kowari, bettongs, lots of bird species, fish, reptiles... I've raised several kangaroos and a couple of wallabies. I'm the studbook keeper for Eastern and Wesstern grey kangaroos in Nort America.
    I attended the ICZ conference in Australia last spring and visited Kangaroo Island and Sydney. I found Australia to be a wonderful place, and I especially enjoyed the wildlife.

    Elaine Kirchner
     
  2. MARK

    MARK Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    7 May 2005
    Posts:
    3,509
    Location:
    Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
    Welcome Elaine, Hope you enjoy your stay here, glad to hear you liked your visit down under, maybe you could tell us a little of zoo life in your part of the world. Interesting that you are the stub book keeper for roos in North America, Welcome.
     
  3. Simon Hampel

    Simon Hampel Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
    18 Oct 2003
    Posts:
    5,926
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    Welcome Rookeyper - great to have you here.
     
  4. patrick

    patrick Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    29 Nov 2004
    Posts:
    2,449
    Location:
    melbourne, victoria, australia
    great to have you here elaine. i'm sure you have some very valuable contributions to some of teh discusssions we have been having of late.

    welcome!
     
  5. Zoo_Boy

    Zoo_Boy Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    26 Nov 2005
    Posts:
    1,462
    Location:
    Australia
    OMG u are building the new africa exhibit at the moment that rocks, i have been getting news about if of google, can you provide anymore info, such as a map of the new exhibit

    u roc, thnx for joining Zoo_Boy, aka Zoo_Boy
     
  6. Rookeyper

    Rookeyper Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    26 Jan 2007
    Posts:
    279
    Location:
    Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA
    I'm sorry but I don't have access to a current map of the African Journey. Construction hasn't really started--they are still finishing the destruction of the old exhibit. If you visit the zoo website, Fort Wayne Children's Zoo, you can find more of the details. This project is replacing our former African exhibit which has been in existence 1976. It promises to be a wonderful area. Our entire staff is so excited about it! It's amazing to me that someone from Australia knows about our project--our director will be stunned.
    Though we a called a children's zoo we aren't the petting zoo that many people think of when they hear the name. We do, however, build our exhibits so that kids can see without having to be lifted up to look over a wall. We exhibit lots of big animals, and some pretty cool small ones too! A couple of years ago we built a large shark tank across from our Great Barrier Reef tank.
    I could go on and on, but you can probably learn more from the website!

    Elaine
     
  7. jwer

    jwer Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    22 Jan 2007
    Posts:
    1,361
    Location:
    Groningen, Netherlands
    What a small world, through coïncidence my uncle from the Netherlands ended up marrying a woman from Fort Wayne a few years ago and now lives with her... I haven't had the chance to visit them over there, unfortunately, but i heared a lot about the Fort Wayne Children's Zoo allready (they're trying to lure me over ;) )

    I'll most probably be able to visit it in the next couple of years, and what i heared about it it's a fine little zoo, so looking forward to seeing it!

    Welcome to this Australian Zoo forum!

    Is there an American Zoo-fans forum yet? I only know a german, dutch and french, but no english or american, funnily enough...
     
  8. Nigel

    Nigel Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    23 Jan 2004
    Posts:
    736
    Location:
    Wellington , New Zealand
    welcome

    Welcome to Rookyper !
    I also say thanks for joining the forum , and it is great to have more people who actually work in zoos from different parts of the world joining the forum !
    ( I wish I worked in the zoo ) But I am a zoo fan from New Zealand
    ( Kiwiland ) :) :)
     
  9. Coquinguy

    Coquinguy Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    30 Aug 2005
    Posts:
    1,765
    Location:
    australia
    fort wayne childrens zoo actually seems to enjoy quite a high profile internationally. i was aware of it from polls. isnt it consistently voted a sone of the best small zoos in the US?
     
  10. Rookeyper

    Rookeyper Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    26 Jan 2007
    Posts:
    279
    Location:
    Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA
    Sorry not to have replied earlier. Fort Wayne Children's Zoo does have quite a good reputation. We have consistently been voted as one of the 10 best zoos in North America. Though we're certainly not on the scale of San Diego or Brookfield, we're not a tiny place at all. We have 500,000+ visitors annually. We strive to be clean and green. In addition to those who visit the zoo, we have a program to visit all of the 3rd grade (8-9 year olds) in this area with a conservation message and a visit from a couple of small zoo animals. We also visit hospitals and nursing homes. We try to get the visitors in contact with the animals with the use of large glass windows, piano wire on our bat exhibit, a walk-through kangaroo yard, a wonderful new sea lion exhibit with underwater viewing. The divers in our Great Barrier Reef and shark exhibits have microphones in their masks and are able to answer questions for the visitors.
    Working here is a treat. We have a large Indonesian rain forest dome, the aforementioned African section, Australia, and the original part of the zoo with penguins, alligators, tortoises, red pandas, and a large farm area built to look like a local farm might have looked 50 years ago. Our management is great! As we are smaller, we get to participate in a lot of things. I personally assist with all the medical procedures with any of my animals, be it surgery, physical exam, or necropsy. It's a great place to learn!