Boonshoft Museum of
Areas of Interest
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The Boonshoft Museum of Discovery’s Live Animal collection consists of over one hundred animals and insects located in several areas of the Museum, from the Discovery Zoo to the Tidal Pool and Bieser Discovery Center.
The Discovery Zoo at the Boonshoft Museum
They are adorable, furry, feathered, and sometimes even scaly, but most visitors agree – the residents of the Discovery Zoo are a must-see on every trip to the Boonshoft Museum of Discovery. Managed by the Live Animals Department, the Discovery Zoo consists of over one hundred animals and insects, ranging from entertaining river otters and engaging prehensile-tailed porcupines, to the ever-popular Madison the bobcat.
Why do animals look the way they do? From a skunk’s stripe to a kinkajou’s prehensile tail, learn why each creature has its own special shapes, colors and adaptations. This exhibit displays a variety of animals and habitats from Ohio and beyond. The Discovery Zoo explores the function behind the form. Whether an animal is strikingly beautiful or has an appearance only a mother could love, visitors will learn how an animal’s appearance, shape and size have been formed over time to help them survive in their natural habitat.
Since the Zoo’s renovations in 2010, the animals have been settling into more accommodating and spacious exhibit areas that offer more comfortable living for the residents and a wonderful, up-close experience for guests. Renovations included entirely new enclosures, ventilation systems, and staff work areas that allow the Live Animals staff to cultivate important relationships with their Discovery Zoo friends, which is essential to the health and happiness of these lively creatures because so many of them have been injured in the wild and are unable to survive on their own. Whether you visit the Museum’s river otters – Glider, Diver and Splasher – as they take a dip in their personal pond, or sneak a peek at the gregarious meerkats, the Discovery Zoo features some of the most amazing animals from both abroad and our own backyard.
Though the Discovery Zoo houses a myriad of Animal Ambassadors, some of the wet and wild animals can also be found in the Bieser Discovery Center and the Tidal Pool. The BieserDiscover Center is home to some of the “creepiest” critters which are often misunderstood because of their scary appearance, while the Tidal Pool is home to crustaceans and other creatures that inhabit the shore. So whether you stop by the Bieser Discovery Center to hang out with Rajeev, the Museum’s 16-foot-long Burmese python, or take a trip to the Tidal Pool to discover an indoor shoreline, there are live animal experiences to be found around every corner of the Boonshoft Museum.