Caldwell Zoo animals keep their cool during heat wave
POSTED: Sunday, August 10, 2014 - 4:02pm
UPDATED: Monday, August 11, 2014 - 9:14am
Tyler, TX (KETK) — Popsicles, ice cubes, and sprinklers. Not only do these keep us cool during the hot summer months, they also do wonders for animals.
KETK spoke with the Caldwell Zoo Curator, Yvonne Stainback, who said, "So once it gets warm we try to do something, especially for the mammals, at least every day. So they'll have some kind of activity to help cool them off".
The Caldwell Zoo has something unique for each species, beginning with the elephants. The elephant handler Jesse Santee said, "We give them baths once or twice week and they'll come ruin it right away by throwing mud around to keep cool. And then they will get in the pool themselves". Zoo keepers will even throw frozen vegetables to the bottom of the lake so elephants dive under water for the goodies. Santee shared, 'We like to do that for them to get in there and cool down during the day".
Other animals, like the White Tigers, enjoy novelties like "blood pops". The Tiger handler, Amanda Masseau, said, "Willy has gotten a frozen blood pop it's a frozen treat that we made from blood straight from their diet". These treats are given to the mammals when they start panting or looking sluggish. Masseau explained, "They do a lot of things like dog will. They pant, the tigers in particular will start going into their pond a lot. and just laying in the shade looking really miserable. You know when they get hot they get a little irritable so they start fights sometimes".
However, the zoo is always loaded with misters, ponds, and air conditioning.