South American Walk Through
As you enter our South America walk through, flocks of bright pink roseate spoonbills roost nearby glossy puna ibis. These are some of the over 150 individual birds that live here. Nothing can compare to the sight of these birds in the bright sunshine. In this exhibit alone, the spoonbills, ibis, herons and terns consume almost 15-pounds of fish daily!
The animals that need the most consistently warm temperatures are the reptiles. In South America, since the yellow-footed tortoises and rhinoceros iguanas must depend on the termperatuer in their environment to maintain their own body temperature, it is vital that they are outside only when the low temperature doesn't dip below 50-degrees. This is true for any of our reptiles housed outdoors.
Many of the South American mammals can be seen all year long. However squirrel monkeys, tamanduas, Baird's tapirs all have their own winter homes where they stay until spring arrives.
All of the colors of the rainbow may be seen in the many types of parrots housed here. Hyacinth macaws, the largest of all parrots, are usually found in the free-flight area. These striking blue birds are also the only parrots with colored skin. This bright-yellow skin can be seen on their faces near their beaks. Our Zoo has made a commitment to work with many parrot species by gathering husbandry information in order to improve the care of such birds in captivity. This is in addition to conservation resources allotted to programs for species like the thick-billed parrot. Sedgwick County Zoo helps provide funding toward fieldwork being done in Mexico in order to better understand the habits of wild thick-billed parrots.
As you plan your visit to the Zoo in Spring or Summer make sure you visit the South America walk through. Many of our animals will have returned, and others will be introduced as the weather continues to warm up. The diversity and number of animals within are sure to provide a new and exciting experience each time you visit.