Discussion in 'General Zoo Discussion' started by Indlovu, 6 Jul 2010.
Just to inform everyone, the deadline has now passed.
Thank you. I will look into that.
When will the winner be announced?
Once Dibatag gets online.
O ok thank you.
THe winner is DesertRhino 150 with their very diverse and educational exhibit. It was perfectly suited for the climate and the goals of the zoo!
A zoo wants a new exhibit that focuses around the unique and threatened wildlife of a specific region. They have given you six options for a centrepiece exhibit:
• Fergusson Island striped possum (Papua New Guinea)
• Golden palm civet (Sri Lanka)
• Goliath tiger fish (Democratic Republic of the Congo)
• Aye-aye (Madagascar)
• Malayan pangolin (Cambodia and Vietnam)
• Kaiser’s spotted newt (Iran)
The rules of this are:
• You can choose ONE centrepiece animal off the list, and then you can only exhibit other animals from that country
• There is a minimum of six mammals, five birds, four reptiles/amphibians and two fish/invertebrates
• There is a minimum of four enclosures, three aviaries and five vivaria/aquaria
• The animals do not have to be readily available in captivity
• There has to be at least one mixed enclosure, one mixed aviary and one mixed vivaria
• There is a maximum of fifteen mammals, fifteen birds, fifteen reptiles/amphibians and fifteen fish/invertebrates
• There have to be facilities to accommodate at least 1:1 of the centrepiece species
• At least three species have to be ranked over Vulnerable on the IUCN (not including the centrepiece species)
• The exhibit can include enclosures that require outdoor access, or can be set completely indoors
• Extra merit can be received on this challenge for keeping animals not seen in captivity
I’ll be looking for the most interesting exhibit with the most unusual and threatened species. I hope you enjoy this challenge, and I look forward to reading about your ideas.
Well done DesertRhino150 for being the first person to win two challenges. You need to set a deadline though
Thanks haz_cat. It's quite a privilege.
Anyway, the deadline for the challenge will be 8:00pm on Friday 30th.
The Amazing Biodiversty of Madagascar
I chose to make the aye-aye my center piece due to Madagascar's amazing flora/fauna.
The Amazing Biodiversity of Madagascar
The Malagasy Bio-Dome is the largest indoor exhibit in the zoo.The first thing you come to is a large open top exhibit for 1.1 Aye-Ayes.
The enclosure is planted with palms and other plants flown in from the zoos greenhouse and nursery in Madagascar.The branches climb out from the top of the exhibit and crawl across the roof,allowing the aye-ayes to climb out above guests.Insects are hidden in logs to increase natural behaviors.Next you cross a bridge over a slow flowing creek,holding 5.10 Kieneri's Cichlid .After crossing you enter a cave.A huge glass window holds back 1.2 Nile Crocodiles,which are viewed underwater.It looks as if the crocodile pond is connected to the creek,and it is.The creek turns into a waterfall.A dam at the top keeps the cichlids in and the crocs cannot climb the waterfall.A few talapia are thrown in for food,and as a clean up crew.In the cave wall is a terrarium for 0.0.9 Madagascan Hissing Cockroaches and another for the shortest lived vertebrae the 1.1 Labord's Chameleons that are switched out with 1.3 Dwarf Neon Day Geckos when they die.Exiting the cave you find a educational display about giant fossas,megaladapis,the elephant bird,,and the Madagascan pygmy hippopotamus.The display teaches about how many Madagascan animal have gone extinct and that the ones alive desperately need protection.
Part 2 next time
I'm so sorry for not knowing this but what does 1:1 mean. Is it a ratio?
1.1 means 1 male.1 female and if there is 1.1.1 that means 1 male.1 female.1 unknown sex
Thank you. That will help me a lot.
What Time zone for the due date?
In British time.
The exhibit is based on the war torn country of Iran. Most Iranian animals have been pushed to a breaking point because of habitat loss, poaching, illegal animal trade, and many other problems that have made Iranian animals so unique to this amazing place. This is why the Kaiser's Spotted Newt is the Centerpiece Animal in the exhibit. Visitors will begin their journey in an old Persian Palace. When visitors enter the temple they will see many paintings, pots, weapons, and other persian artifacts that you uncover in each room you walk into. As visitors open more doors into the Persian Empire's past you may come across the top of the palace where you can see the whole zoo from this point. When visitors exit the Persian Palace they enter a long hall of large Lion, Elephant, and Tiger statues. The statues will lead you to a grassy shrub plain. The plain is a breeding compound for the Critically Endangered Asiatic Cheetah. Where many live in this spacious exhibit. The breeding compound is made up of 12 large exhibits surrounding a temperature controlled building especially designed for baby cubs. The visitors can only see two of the twelve exhibits. The first is viewed by a glass window under a pergola. The second exhibit is in a large valley which makes it easy for visitors to see the whole exhibit. The exhibit is also made for a jeep safari but instead of just looking at the cheetahs they are running after you. A good sized piece of meat is tied to a rope on the jeep. The driver will speed down the long valley stretch to see if a cheetah is ready to run for its food. If the cheetah does not want to run it will not force it upon the cheetah so the driver will go back the same way and prepare for the next run. When you exit the Breeding compound the next exhibit you see is in a giant bio dome for species never before kept in captivity. The Bio Dome is temperature controlled so it mimics the Iranian desert atmosphere. As you walk into the hot Bio Dome you walk by patches of native flora spread out along the sandy dunes and rock walls. As the path leads you to the next exhibit you go through a set of doors into a nocturnal exhibit. The first exhibit is home to the unknown Iranian Jerboa. The Iranian Jerboas live in this cacti ridden desert exhibit. The exhibit is joined by a small dirt cave where visitors can see the burrows through glass of these skiddish species. The dirt cave is also home to the Pere David's Mole and a mixed species exhibit for the Endangered Zarundny's Jird and Critically Endangered Persian Mole. The mixed exhibit can also be viewed by a ground level viewing area where visitors can see the nocturnal animals come in and out of their burrows. While visitors are still in the nocturnal exhibit they will see another dark room. The room is lighted by ultra violet light so you can see the Camel Spider and The Death Stalker Scorpion glow in the dark. There is also fossils of shining scorpions and an information panel that shows how scorpions glow in the dark by the hardening of their cuticle. Once visitors get out of the insectarium they will see a large mixed species Vivarium. The Vivarium is home to the Asian Sand Viper and Diadem Snake. The Vivarium has two different habitats. The first is a sand dune for the Asian Sand Viper. Since the viper rarely ever leaves the sand it will not venture out into the second habitat and the Diadem Snake is more compelled to the second which is a rugged shrub landscape with tall basking rocks. Each animal has an escape way if they venture into the others habitat. The last exhibit in the hot Bio Dome is just for the Centerpiece animal. Eight moist vivariums are home for many breeding pairs of the Kaiser's Spotted Newt. With almost less than 1,000 adult newts left in the wild the exhibit is dedicated to this species. This is why there is a conservation lab behind the scenes for studying all the Threatened Iranian species. As you get out of the Bio Dome you find yourself in a persian forest with many songbird's singing. The next exhibits you see are all netted and many have elevated paths. The first exhibit is inside a hollow tree with a small netted outside access. Endangered Setzer's Mouse Tailed Dormouse. The next exhibit you see is an outdoor vivarium for the Endangered Latifi's Viper. Once you've seen the first forest exhibit you then venture deeper into the forest. The next exhibit you see is a mixed species aviary for Caucasian Black Grouse and Cinereous Bunting. Visitors will view this aviary from a elevated path or a bridge that goes over a small trickeling stream. As you follow the path it takes you along the side of the stream. As the stream widens you notice it goes inside a free flight aviary for the Vulnerable Palla's Fish Eagle. The aviary also has a underwater viewing area where you can see the eagle catch fish. Visitors will follow the stream into a wet cave where you can see the Long Fingered Bat and Schaub's Myotis. The bats have a unknown status in the wild so they are under study by the exhibits scientist. The stream then disappears into a open exhibit where the path will go over the exhibit. The exhibit is mimicking a stream in the Shir Abad Cave where the only Critically Endangered Gorgan Mountain Salamanders live. As you look from the elevated path you see them swimming all around you. Since the Salamander is only restricted to one stream in one cave in the whole world with less than 100 individuals there is a off area where most of them live. This is also another species the lab is studying. After you exit the cave you see a large lake resembling the Caspian Sea. There is a part of the beach where visitors can swim in a certain area beside most of the animals. There is also a overhanging area which is the best place to see the two off exhibit from a distance. If you are lucky you my see the Critically Endangered Siberian Crane and its chicks or a pack of Endangered Caspian Sea Wolves in their half beach half forest exhibit. When visitors come closer to the beach they can go inside a underwater tunnel or take the beach trail to a basking spot for Endangered Caspian Seal. If you go inside the tunnel you are immediately surrounded by the Critically Endangered Caspian Salmon, Persian Sturgeon, and the giant Beluga Sturgeon. Visitors will also be able to see in another part of the tunnel a feeding time for the seals with live fish and if you are on the beach path you can see a seal show where keepers show the seals performing tricks and talk about why they are endangered. As you exit the beach the path takes you on a large incline to a large mountain. The mountain is home to the Vulnerable Eastern Imperial Eagle and two Endangered Persian Leopard Exhibits. The Persian Leopard Exhibit is designed so it can look over a large valley with herds of the Vulnerable Coitered Gazelle and Bezoar Ibex. You exit through a bronze archway carved into two lions fighting.
I hope you liked It.
The Land of wings.
This Exhibit is entirely indoors and in all walk through aviaries the netting is hung from the ceiling to the floor. Paths are made to look like compounded dirt and there is leaf litter scattered over the floor. The whole Building is planted with native palms, tree-ferns and other trees as well as vines and plants in the undergrowth.
You enter a large hall and you quickly realize that the further you walk the denser the trees get and the darker it becomes, the raucous calls of lorikeets is drowned out by the sound of cicadas. You continue along the dimly lit path when on your left you notice a pair of critically endangered Teleformin Cuscus(1.1) moving around in the branches. They inhabit an exhibit fronted with a screen of piano wire. Inside there is lots of branches and broad leafed plants. Further down the path on the right is a similar exhibit for Fregusson Island Striped Possums(1.1) and Ground Cuscus(1.2). The zoo holds over 10 pairs of the possums in a behind the scenes breeding facility that is specially equipped to handle the many endangered marsupials that are represented in this exhibit. There is also a large mixed vivarium encompassing a tree in the middle of the trail, it is home to Green Tree Pythons(0.1) and Northern New Guinea Tree Frogs (4.4). You emerge from the foliage and enter a large aviary that houses Fire-Maned Bowerbirds(4.8), Knob Billed Fruit Dove(3.3), Metallic Pigeon(3.3), Victoria Crowned Pigeon(4.4), Brown-Headed Paradise Kingfisher(2.2) and Emperor Bird-of-Paradise(2.4). After leaving this lushly planted aviary you turn a corner and find a large dry moated exhibit for Gold-Mantled Tree Kangaroo (1.1) and Barton’s Long-Beaked Echidna(1.1). There are trees and large branches for the tree kangaroos and areas with deep substrate in which food is hidden for the echidna. After this exhibit you pass below a archway of vines and find yourself in a traditional village with mud huts and cooking areas. You can enter the different huts. In one you look out of a glass wall into an exhibit housing Dwarf Cassowary(1.1) and Orange-Footed Scrubfowl (1.2). In the next hut is the entrance to a walk through aviary housing Rainbow Lorikeets (10.10), Eclectus Parrot (2.2), Black-Capped Lory (4.4) and Buff-Banded Rail(3.5). You can purchase food to feed to the lorikeets in the entrance hut. In the final hut you find a large planted vivarium housing Green tree Monitors (1.1). After the village there is a walk through exhibit home to Agile Wallabies (2.5) and Dusky Pademelons(2.3). After leaving the walk through and meandering down the path you encounter the largest land based predator on the island, the Rusty Quoll (1.2) Their glass fronted enclosure is shaded by a huge fig tree and there is a stream flowing through .The stream exits the enclosure and enters an glass fronted exhibit for the worlds only poisonous bird, the Rusty Pitohui (1.1) There is also underwater viewing of the stream. Here you can find shoaling Bosman’s Rainbowfish(10.20) and Emperor Gudgeon (3.3). The stream exits this exhibit and flows parallel to the path. You will find a group of Ifola Tree Kangaroos(3.3) in a dry moated exhibit planted with trees and decorated with feeding and sleeping platforms. There is a raised boardwalk that you can ascend to get a better looks. Beside the exhibit the stream ends in a large pool. This is home to New Guinea Crocodiles(1.2) and Fly River Turtles(2.2). Finally before you leave the building there are a pair of densely planted aviaries home to King of Saxony Bird-of-Paradise(1.2) and Huon Astrapia(2.5)
For the centrepiece of my exhibit, I chose the Malayan Pangolin and so it is set in Vietnam, though some elements are borrowed from my Southeast Asia complex in the ‘Design a zoo’ thread. Before I begin, however, it will make things simpler if I briefly describe the general layout. Essentially, the exhibit is based around a central building with the rotation enclosures coming off it, the visitor trail then goes around the perimeter of these enclosures in a loop. As one of the challenges of this competition was to be creative with the species and include some rarities, all of the birds and mammals (I’m not very good on the others) featured are either vulnerable, endangered, critically endangered or data deficient and the statuses are given. Meanwhile many are not, to the best of my knowledge, represented in captivity, these are labelled NFIC.
Anyway, to begin the journey, visitors enter a small movie theatre where a film is played giving a brief history of Vietnam. They learn that the country was once covered with virgin rainforest, but years of civil war and a more recent explosion in population have meant that now only twenty percent of it remains. However the message at the end of the film is that, despite the urgency, there is still hope, and if we act now then the remaining forest can still be saved, along with its incredible inhabitants. Once the film has finished, visitors are ushered through a side-door and emerge onto a path surrounded by walls of lush vegetation and broadleaf trees which arch over the trail. Misters hidden in the foliage create a sense of mystery, whilst speakers play pre-recorded birdsong to suggest that humans are not the only creatures in this forest.
Down the winding path, visitors my spot one of the many free-roaming animals, such as Golden-headed Langur (CR and NFIC), Heude’s Pig (DD and NFIC), Truong Son Muntjac (DD and NFIC), Black-necked Crane (VU), and Black-faced Spoonbill (EN). Unlike in normal zoos, encounters with free-roaming animals are entirely on their terms and, as we generally respect those in positions of power, I believe that this approach will generate more respect for the animals. Furthermore, having several species wich can go anywhere in th exhibit will force a closer examination of the environment and encourage visitors to linger.
Shortly after leaving the movie theatre, visitors reach the first exhibit: a small aviary containing Imperial Pheasant (CR) and Pale-capped Pigeon (VU) which are viewed through Invisi-net. To increase novelty for frequent visitors and give the impression of a changing environment, there are three different sites where the aviary can be situated and the lightweight structure is regularly moved from one to another. All three aviary sites are lush, with plenty of perches and a small pool in which the birds can bathe, but they each blend seamlessly into the surroundings when not enclosed.
Further along, the forest opens out to reveal a lightly-wooded hillside with a stream tumbling down it into a reed-lined pool adjacent to the path. However, this pool is really a moat (the reeds making it look smaller and more natural) and the hillside is the first of four one acre enclosures through which the following six species are rotated: Eastern Black Crested Gibbon (CE and NFIC), Dhole (EN), Sun Bear (DD), Kouprey (CE and NFIC), Malayan Tapir (VU) and another of Vietnam’s little known, critically endangered, forest dwelling ungulates that will become apparent later (CE and NFIC). As signage is rarely read and destroys the illusion of a real forest, a zoo presenter is on hand to tell visitors that the elephant-like animal emerging from the pool is actually a Malayan Tapir (VU) and more closely related to rhinos. This informal talk gathers quite an audience, as people are generally more interested when listening to someone telling them about animals than they are when reading about them. Meanwhile the tapir, ignoring its captive audience, ambles over to a simulated earth bank in order to scratch itself, before returning to the pool and rolling in the mud around the shore. Moving to the next viewing area into this exhibit, visitors pass a vivarium built into a tree which houses several Vietnamese Walking Sticks. Meanwhile, at the next viewing area, a small herd of Kouprey (CE and NFIC) can be seen, quietly grazing on low shrubs and grasses. Although these are currently mixed with the tapir, a later tour of the exhibit will likely reveal that they share different enclosures with different species, reinforcing the idea of a dynamic and changing forest.
Next visitors come to a netted, ‘U’-shaped enclosure which is viewed through glass at the two angles. This is part of a second, smaller rotation system for these nine species: Red-shanked Douc (EN), Marbled Cat (VU), Hairy-nosed Otter (DD), Annamite Rabbit (CR and NFIC), Vu Quang Ox (CR and NFIC), Red-headed Vulture (CR and NFIC), Giant Ibis (CR and NFIC), Vietnamese Pheasant (EN) and Rufous-necked Hornbill (VU). In this particular exhibit, there is a pond with underwater viewing which contains live Japanese Rice Fish for the animals to catch. Meanwhile, to further increase the novelty, mammals from this rotation system are given frequent access to the one acre enclosures of the main rotation creating the impression of a continuous forest.
Continuing down the trail, a rustic bridge is reached which creaks with every step. Looking up the valley it crosses, visitors see the second of the main rotation enclosures and watch a pair of Dhole (EN) sleeping on a rock outcrop (this is heated, encouraging the animals to remain in view). Meanwhile, on the opposite side of the bridge is a huge aviary of light mesh which spans the valley. This is home to a pair of Greater Adjutant Stork (EN) and includes several mature trees for perching as well as stork activated misters near the bridge which give guests great views of these imposing birds. Further along the path, visitors come to three more viewing areas into the Dhole enclosure where they can watch the animals over dry moats obscured by vegetation; having multiple small viewing areas like this breaks up crowds and creates a more intimate experience for guests.
Moving on from the Dhole enclosure, visitors come across a large vivarium built into a rock face which houses Chinese Water Dragon and Elongated Tortoise (EN). There are plenty of branches and ledges in the enclosure allowing the arboreal lizards to keep out of the way of the ground-dwelling tortoises.
Further along the path, visitors come upon a Vietnamese longhouse like those of the M’nong peoples. It has a roof of Endureed synthetic thatch and is raised on stilts three feet above the ground. Entering the building, visitors discover that it is open-sided from around half way up the walls to the roof giving unobstructed views of the animals. The long-house actually cuts through the centre of the second netted rotation exhibit with the flying/arboreal species crossing to the other side by going over the top and the ground-dwelling species crossing by going underneath between the stilts elevating the building. The building’s “open” sides are actually covered with Invisi-net to give the impression that animals can enter when actually, they can’t. There is a bench down the centre of the longhouse so that visitors can sit and watch the animals if they wish.
After having left the longhouse, visitors come to a raised viewing area looking out over the third enclosure in the main rotation. This consists of a swathe of forest in the centre of which, casually browsing on a low branch, is a Vietnamese Javan Rhino (CR and NFIC).
End of part one, part two coming soon.
After browsing for a short time, the rhino moves closer and begins patrolling the exhibit perimeter. Eager visitors follow it past several viewing areas before reaching a large pool containing Siamese Crocodile (CR) and several Swinhoe’s Soft-shell Turtle (CR). Behind this, the rhino emerges from the undergrowth and visitors watch as it enters the water, apparently sharing the same space as the reptiles although, in reality, a piece of deadfall spanning the pool conceals an underwater barrier, stopping the animals from reaching one another. For a while, visitors remain and watch as the rhino browses on trees surrounding the pool whilst submerged in water, but eventually continue on their journey.
Soon, visitors come to a long and reasonably straight stretch of path, on one side of this is an invisible dry moat looking into the third rotation enclosure (which currently houses the Javan Rhino), whilst on the other is the fourth which has a small family of Eastern Black Crested Gibbon (DD and NFIC) brachiating through the canopy above a pair of Sun Bears (DD) which are using their long tongues to extract honey from a hidden feeder. At the end of this, visitors come to the mouth of a limestone cave several metres in diameter like those found in the Marble Mountains. Near to the entrance are several glass-covered “cracks” giving up-close views of the enclosures on either side (the fence between them runs along the top of the cave), but as visitors descend further, they are plunged into darkness. Here, there are just a few subtly-lit vivariums for colubrids such as the recently discovered White-lipped Keelback and Tiger Keelback in addition to insects like Myrmarachne maxillosa, a spider which has adapted to mimic ants.
Eventually, visitors see “the light at the end of the tunnel”, and emerge into a two-storey high, circular glass viewing which allows them a 360 degree view of the third enclosure in the smaller rotation system. Here, it is the humans that are caged, surrounded by other animals, thus giving excellent viewing opportunities. In the centre of the viewing area is a raised section with a bench on it, allowing people to stay and observe the animals for as long as they wish.
To continue on their journey, visitors enter a short glass-sided “tunnel” through the enclosure; this is lowered a few feet below ground-level so visitors can view animals such as the Marbled Cat (VU), Hairy-nosed Otter (DD), Annamite Rabbit (CR and NFIC) and Vu Quang Ox (CR and NFIC) at eye-level. Emerging from the tunnel, visitors find themselves is a large building with a row of long glass panels up one side. They are actually on the upper level of the central building, the lower level being a network of holding pens which are necessary to manage the complex rotation system. Through the glass windows, visitors discover that they are looking down on the indoor stalls of the animals featured in the main rotation. Each species is given access to several different compartments, and each of these has different foods, bedding and enrichment items to encourage the animals to make their own choices – this relieves stress. Meanwhile, at visitor level, the Eastern Black Crested Gibbons can swing over all of the stalls (the walls between each are only one storey high) on numerous ropes, nets and hammocks; there are also elevated ledges on which they can rest.
Meanwhile, on the opposite side of the corridor to the windows are a number of interactive displays about the animals featured in the exhibit: in a sound-proofed booth, for example, visitor’s can listen to the calls of Black Crested Gibbons and compare their loudness with that of other animals found in the exhibit, as well as trying to be louder themselves. There is also a pictorial display which compares the behaviour of the Dhole to that of the domestic dog, encouraging visitors to look out for their own canine’s wild behaviours, and a large picture of a sun bear’s face with a pull-out rubber tongue to graphically demonstrate just how long they really are.
This corridor is then exited through doors which lead to a queuing area. Upon reaching the front of the queue, visitors discover that they are entering a second movie theatre, exactly the same as the first. The same film then begins to play, and visitors again hear that Vietnam was once covered with virgin rainforest. At this point, however, the film pauses with the narrator explaining that this exhibit is ending as it begun, in the same way that it is the zoo’s hope that Vietnam, or at least parts of it, will end as they began – covered with virgin rainforest. The film then explains that the zoo does a lot of work conserving the wildlife of Vietnam, but all of it is centred on one animal: the Malayan Pangolin (EN). Whilst this may appear narrow-minded, by protecting the forests in which these animals live and setting up anti-poaching patrols to stop them being hunted illegally, the zoo is indirectly benefitting all of the animals that visitors have seen. And not only that, but rainforest plants produce a large percentage of the planet’s oxygen and so, by protecting the habitat of the pangolin, the zoo is protecting future generations of people as well.
At the film’s conclusion, visitors are again ushered through a side-door, but this time emerge into another long corridor (actually, this is adjacent to the last one). Down one side are three long glass panels. Coming to the first one, visitors realise that it is a depiction of a patch of forest devastated by logging with only tree stumps remaining. Meanwhile, ‘Save the pangolin . . .’ is printed above the glass viewing window.
The next panel is a huge juxtaposition – a large and highly detailed rainforest habitat which actually houses the male Malayan Pangolin. However, he isn’t the only animal in this enclosure and, to demonstrate how the pangolin is interconnected with all the rest of Vietnam’s wildlife, this room is the fourth and final exhibit in the smaller rotation system and also the only indoor one. As such, the pangolins may share it with several of the (non-carnivorous) species which demonstrate how its habitat is also vital to many other animals. Above the glass panel looking into this exhibit is written ‘Save the rainforest . . .’
Coming to the last panel, visitors realize that it is actually a mirror showing a reflection of themselves, above which is printed ‘Save yourself’.
Finally, leaving this corridor, visitors enter a small square room with a glass window onto the female pangolin habitat and the words ‘Save the pangolin . . . Save yourself’ printed above the door. Meanwhile, in the centre is a large box with several slots into which visitors can donate money that will go towards Malayan Pangolin conservation in Vietnam.
So there you go, well done to the few intrepid explorers who made it to the end and thank you to DesertRhino150 for giving me an excuse to design exhibits for Douc Langurs, Saola and Vietnamese Javan Rhino – it was fun!
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