Tails From The Zoo

D.D. Leobard Winery Remembers Debby December 16, 2008

Filed under: Conservation Programs,Fund Raising — Scott Gray @ 8:38 pm
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Look for the polar bear on your next visit to the wine store!

Look for the polar bear on your next visit to the LC or wine store.

D.D. Leobard Winery is donating $0.50 from every bottle of its Polar Bear Wine sold in the month of December to the Zoological Society of Manitoba in support of our Polar Bear Conservation Fund.

The Zoo Society would like to thank D.D. Leobard Winery for their wonderful support of the Assiniboine Park Zoo by remembering Debby’s legacy. I personally just bought a bottle of both the white and the red at the Liquor Commission yesterday and will be sampling them this weekend and I encourage everyone to pick up a couple of bottles during December. (They make great holiday gifts!)

Please join the Zoological Society as we support both polar bear conservation and our local Winnipeg wineries.



Geocaching at the Zoo December 12, 2008

When I first heard about geocaching, I was a bit perplexed. My first reaction to it was that it seemed like an odd hobby. Then I realized it was actually a high tech scavenger hunt that got participants to explore their city, their parks and their province or state. Didn’t sound quite as odd anymore. In fact, it sounded like a great way for youth groups, families and schools to be active!

Lead by two very active and enthusiast Geocachers and zoo supporter, I got the Zoological Society involved, and along with the Manitoba Geocaching Association, worked to set up and launch a series of eight fun new caches throughout the Assiniboine Park Zoo. Revealed in June of 2008, these special zoo caches were themed around endangered species and their conservation. The Zoo Education Centre was thrilled to be able to get its message of conservation out to a new audience. We all saw this as a great way for families, groups and individuals to learn about animals while either being introduced to Geocaching or giving experienced cachers a chance to add eight finds to their list (assuming you find them all!)

We were thrilled but the response we had, not only at the launch but at the continued interest in the series. If you haven’t been to the Assiniboine Park Zoo to find the caches, don’t delay. We are planning on a new series for 2009 and the old group will be removed. The new group of caches will be launched in the spring.

Visit www.mbgeocaching.ca for more information and www.geocaching.com to get your cache coordinates. Please note that zoo admission is required for entry (always free for Zoo Society members) and no caches are located in “off-limit” areas.

Remember, geocaching is winter friendly, as is the Assiniboine Park Zoo and our caches. Happy Geocaching!


Year of the Frog Review December 5, 2008

The Zoological Society of Manitoba and the Assiniboine Park Zoo helped kick of Year of the Frog (YOTF) in February of this year (on Leap Day none-the-less!) as we joined hundreds of zoos, aquariums and conservation organizations bring about public awareness about amphibians. The Amphibian Ark helped spearhead this massive global public awareness campaign to focus the public’s attention on endangered amphibians, of which there hundreds of species in peril. It also helped focus attention on the critical work being done by zoos and aquariums to save them.  The Zoological Society of Manitoba has been supporting this worldwide initiative with special events, educational programs and community outreach efforts throughout 2008.

The Zoological Society’s Education Department included YOTF in many of its programs in 2008, including spring and summer zoo camps, school programs and interpretive talks, tours and educational booths. We will continue to do so over the coming years. The zoo has also just realeased a series of 15 new amphibian interpretive signs. These new signs will be found throughout the zoo in the spring of 2009, not next to exhibits, but next to the ponds and natural areas in the park. Many people don’t realize that some of the animal sounds that they hear at the zoo in the spring and early summer are not from the zoo’s residents but from wood frogs, boreal chorus frogs, leopard frongs, spring peepers and other frogs and toads that call the Assiniboine Park and Zoo home.

For more information on YOTF, please visit www.zoosociety.com


Year of the Frog Signs

The Assiniboine Park Zoo, the Zoological Society of Manitoba, Nature North and many others have done their part to help further promote frog conservation around Manitoba. Year of the Frog is coming to an end on the calendar only. Zoos around the world are continuing the work that they started in 2008 so that no momentum is lost in the fight to save as many species of amphibians from extinction as possible.

For our part, the Zoological Society secured funding for new amphibian interpretive signs. These 15 signs will not only be displayed throughout the Assiniboine Park Zoo, but copies of them will are being distributed throughout Manitoba. You can get your first view of the new signs at Nature North: http://www.naturenorth.com/Zoo/zoo_amphibians.html

Thanks so much to Manitoba’s Sustainable Development Innovations Fund for providing funding to expand the project province wide and to Doug Collicutt for providing support through his wonderful nature site.

The new amphibian signs will be on display at the zoo and around the province, just in time for spring.