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Anyone have any high concept exhibit ideas?

Discussion in 'Fantasy Zoos' started by TheMightyOrca, 27 Apr 2016.

  1. TheMightyOrca

    TheMightyOrca Well-Known Member

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    With the exception of the extinct species threads that pop up, most of the exhibit designs that get posted here are within the realm of practicality. But I've really been wanting to hear some high concept ideas, stuff that's really over the top and probably not possible (or at least not practical) at the moment. So, do you guys have some crazy ideas?
     
  2. jayjds2

    jayjds2 Well-Known Member

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    I have loads of crazy ideas... One of which is a huge (and I mean HUGE) tank, larger than the Ocean Voyager tank (which is 6.3 million gallons) which is home to whale sharks, manta rays, indopacific sailfish, a breeding group of of scalloped hammerheads, breeding group of tuna, and a whole bunch of other stuff (you get the general idea- a big pelagic tank). Just add filler species and it might be quite impressive! Of course, it wouldn't happen (unless I happened to find 100 million dollars sitting on the side of the road) but it's a concept I liked. I have a few others that I might look over and post in the next few days.

    Another non-practical one is an islands exhibit- and I mean like most of the "major" islands in Oceania represented. Starting with Russia and northern Alaska/Canada (belugas, walruses, sea otters, seals) all the way down to Antarctica- with a bit of everything in between. It just doesn't really make sense to build something on such a scale (and of course marine mammals make the public mad). I'll make a more detailed list on this part soon, as I actually began to draft some of it.
     
  3. jwer

    jwer Well-Known Member

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    I have a few relatively big ideas.

    My most radical would be a massive greenhouse in which the visitor walks over the bottom of the Amazon river. There are swerving paths with walls of glass on either side, holding large groups of Boto and Tucuxi. Shallower parts hold giant river otters and amazonian manatees, preferably all in the same stretch of water. Screaming pihas, toucans, hummingbirds, sloths, red uakari, red howler and a lot more birds and monkeys fill the treetops. Fish are added as long as they don't get eaten (either very large or very small) or get a seperate tank.

    Second idea would be to dig a very, very large and deep pit and build a cliff face along it's walls that would continue above ground into a large aviary. In the bottom of the pit would be a massive fan, as silent as possible blowing wind up the cliff face. Visitors would be placed on a terrace on top of the cliff face sticking out of the ground, perfectly positioned to watch the (Andean?, Californian?) condors soar around or below them along the cliff face.

    Third idea would be a relatively deep pit with many trees, covered by an aviary. When entering the aviary, visitors would be confronted with with relatively wide sturdy wooden paths crossing the treetops where they would be among birds species that live up high. Best theme would be new guinea, with large groups of one or more Birds of Paradise and a lot more bird species. The paths, being large, flat, and even with grond-level would give disabled people a possibilty to "get up high in the trees" without actually climbing up anything.

    Hopefully you get the same mental images as I do when discribing it, because in my head it'd be awesome :D
     
  4. HorseChild

    HorseChild Active Member

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    This idea sounds gorgeous! You could also have primate and reptile species that live high in the trees. I haven't seen many rainforest exhibits that can successfully show the high canopy layer of the rainforest.
     
  5. Jurek7

    Jurek7 Well-Known Member

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    Some of my ideas:

    Himalaya exhibit of two artificial mountains/hills. Visitors go along the valley in between, with suspended bridge and to the waterfall. Species are mountain sheep and goats, snow leopards, yaks and Asian brown bears. Visitors can also go on top of the rocks and see the panorama of the zoo.

    Indoor hall with hippos, crocodiles and African waterbirds, imitating Okavango delta.

    Indoor hall with underwater viewing of botos, giant otter and manatees, and other animals of the Amazon.

    And somewhere on zoochat is my old exhibit concept for Arctic animals, including viewing of polar bears from the artificial ship surrounded by water. One commenter priced it at over $100m. ;)

    And maybe not impossible: several aviaries with ungulates.

    One is Pantanal, with hiacinth macaws, assorted wading birds, capybara, tapir and giant anteater.

    Another is Ethiopian Simien mountains, with gelada, ibex, vultures, marabous and ground hornbills. It is partially walktrough aviary, where visitors have vultures flying overhead and look on gelada and ibex across the stream. Then there is a close-up view through the glass. Then visitors enter a cave/narrow canyon, and see gelada indoor quarters. Then they walk outside the cave, and see the open-air pat of the exhibit. Geladas and ibex can enter there through the narrow tunnell. On the visitor side, there is a grassy hillside, where there are also free-living rock hyraxes.
     
  6. jbnbsn99

    jbnbsn99 Well-Known Member

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    If you want to go true high concept:

    1. A rewilding exhibit - show the environment as it is, as it was, and as it will be.

    2. A literary exhibit - perhaps something based on the Jungle Book?

    3. Wild vs. Domestic - show how humans have changed species through artificial selection
     
  7. Crocodile

    Crocodile Member

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    My concept is a climate-controlled bubble dome (think along the lines of Zoo Zurich's Masoala Rainforest) filled with Australian flora and fauna. It would have enough eucalyptus trees to keep a small number of koalas sustainably. The exhibit would be crazy expensive but as some zoos can attest, so is flying in browse several times a week to feed the little buggers. The exhibit would be filled out with flocks of birds native to eucalyptus forests including rainbow lorikeets (my faves!)
     
  8. jayjds2

    jayjds2 Well-Known Member

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    The Islands and Oceans exhibit:
    A structured path through a lot of exhibits that are mostly impossible due to many reasons, such as:
    Too small of a captive population
    Too much money
    Hard to keep in captivity

    North Pacific:
    Rescued northern sea otters
    Northern fur seals

    Japan:
    Japanese red crowned cranes
    Snow monkeys
    Japanese serows
    Pacific white sided dolphins

    Philippines:
    Visayan warty pig
    Visayan spotted deer
    Philippine crocodile

    Southeast Asia:
    Wild water buffalo
    Binturong
    Lowland anoa
    Sumatran rhinoceros
    Sumatran tiger
    North Sulawesi babirusa
    Aviary
    Javan banteng
    Gaur
    Asian elephant
    Komodo dragon
    Dhole

    Fiji:
    Fiji banded iguana
    Collared lory

    Australia/New Guinea:
    Lots of wallabies and kangaroos
    Emu
    Northern cassowary
    Australian aviary
    Wombat
    Short beaked echidna
    Koala
    New Guinea aviary
    Saltwater crocodile
    Australian freshwater crocodile
    Bat walk-thru
    Brown fur seal

    New Zealand:
    Tuatara
    North island brown kiwi
    As many other animals as possible

    Madagascar:
    Lots of lemurs
    Straw colored fruit bats
    Small other animals
    Fossa

    Indian Ocean islands:
    Rodriguez flying fox
    Mauritius pink pigeon
    Other small animals, mostly birds

    Oceans:
    Rescued seals and sea lions
    Bottlenose dolphin
    West Indian manatee
    Huge outside tank (very unprobable)
    Aquarium

    You get the idea. I left out a bit.
     
  9. TheMightyOrca

    TheMightyOrca Well-Known Member

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    Both very cool ideas, I especially like the second one! While it would probably be too expensive for a zoo to do, I could easily picture it at some kind of adventure/theme park.
     
  10. FunkyGibbon

    FunkyGibbon Moderator Staff Member

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  11. elefante

    elefante Well-Known Member

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    I always wanted to see a Galapagos exhibit with species like land and marine iguanas, blue footed and Nazca boobies, finches, albatrosses, Galápagos sea lions, Sally Lightfoot crabs, Galápagos penguins, and frigates. The only Galapagos species that can be seen in zoos are Galápagos tortoises and American flamingos.
     
  12. FelipeDBKO

    FelipeDBKO Well-Known Member

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    We are two!
     
  13. jayjds2

    jayjds2 Well-Known Member

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    The National Aquarium in Baltimore has a Sally Lightfoot crab.
     
  14. TheMightyOrca

    TheMightyOrca Well-Known Member

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    I always thought that marine iguanas would make for such a cool aquarium exhibit, have some underwater viewing, seeing one swim around would be so awesome. It would definitely add some variety for the aquatic reptiles group.
     
  15. FelipeDBKO

    FelipeDBKO Well-Known Member

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    Galapagos marine iguanas diet consists of algae, and Galapagos land iguana of cactus, why these animals aren't bred in captivity. But I don't think that's impossible to breed them in captivity.

    Does anyone know if there are farms of the algae/cactus that Galapagos iguanas eat, or would it be necessary to import food from Galapagos? Do these animals can adapt to eat food that they wouldn't eat in the wild?
     
  16. jayjds2

    jayjds2 Well-Known Member

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    There's a lot of reasons for the absence of Galapagos animals from zoos. For one thing, it is next to impossible to get export permits from Ecuador (which governs the Galapagos). Secondly, even within the Galapagos most of them are rare in captivity. This is because they are quite hard to care for. I believe only one species of Galapagos finch is in captivity. The marine iguanas (I know very little about the land species) eat a weird kind of algae that so far has proven hard to grow in captivity. To my knowledge, it's because of the currents- cold water coming from below the surface. I don't believe anybody has tried in recent years, though. Marine iguanas so far haven't done well on any other diet. There were multiple attempts by a few zoos worldwide, but the iguanas never lasted longer than a few years. Most perished in months. Even more so, marine iguanas would need a unique enclosure- chilled water, but a warm land area to bask. This kind of atmosphere would be costly.
     
  17. Maguari

    Maguari Never could get the hang of Thursdays. Premium Member

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    Missing the aviary, but this may be of interest, if you haven't seen it: http://www.zoochat.com/476/african-mountain-exhibit-zurich-31-08-a-103123/
     
  18. elefante

    elefante Well-Known Member

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    Interesting. I didn't know those were in captivity.
     
  19. Maguari

    Maguari Never could get the hang of Thursdays. Premium Member

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  20. JVM

    JVM Well-Known Member

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    I had a strange idea the other day. It's sort of based on the evolution of the zoo concept. The building has two large rooms, each with separate viewing areas for the same species.

    On one side is the classic negative idea of a zoo. Small cages with boring signs. Bright lights. The other side, of course, the little cages have doors to their private are and then a large exhibit, an aviary would probably work best, a naturalistic and modern exhibit. The details don't matter. The animals have access to both areas, with some incentive for them to pass into the small cages but free access nonetheless. I would never imagine inhibiting the animals' welfare to score a point here.

    Basically, you allow the zoo visitor to experience just how much zoos have changed in the last hundred years, how far we've come, a very meta commentary on what a zoological institution is and how it has changed. I'm aware it presents some problems, so I'd only advocate it for smaller species.

    Sort of like building an old style and modern exhibit back to back, with doors. I don't know.