Sunday, August 28, 2011

Close Encounters Of The Animal Kind

“We’re trying to give people who are interested in a zoo career the chance to come in and really see what it’s like to work at the zoo and work with the animals,” said Andre Copeland, interpretive programs manager...“Rhinos actually do have somewhat prehensile limbs, especially the black rhino, to aid them when they’re feeding on grasses,” Copeland said. “We may have the rhinos work with the trainers to hold the brush or we may have them do something with their feet, like finger painting.” Rhinos, like all the zoo’s animals, are taught new tricks with positive reinforcement. When the animals engage with trainers, they’re rewarded with something they like. If they don’t want to do the activity, trainers look for something else to do with the animal. more

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