Love animals … on the land, air and sea … then you’ll love a visit to America’s zoos and aquariums.
In recognition of June being ‘National Zoo and Aquarium Month‘ before going to a local zoo or aquarium, find out if they are accredited through the Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA). To receive accreditation, each establishment must go through a complete check list of certain standards for the care of the animals in their charge. The business will be regularly inspected by a team of experts in their field of animal and aquatic life. Each facility should be providing all the animals excellent and care and the general public a safe and wonderful visit. The AZA maintains on their web site a search site for the public to check if their local zoo or aquarium has kept up their accreditation.
The recognition of the importance of our nation’s zoos and aquariums was declared by President Ronald Reagan in an official proclamation on March 25, 1982, so establishing the month of June as ‘National Zoo and Aquarium Month’.
Besides enjoying these facilities by actually visiting them, in the 21st century it has become possible to visit these places and see the animals with a virtual tour on the Internet. Many have set up web cams and videos so that an individual can watch some of the animals in real time.
Some of the more interesting zoo or aquarium cyberspace sites are:
Parker Manatee Aquarium – in Bradenton, Florida, has the oldest manatee in captivity, over 60 years old. Snooty is his name and he is also the star of his own live web cam.
New England Aquarium in Boston, MA – with videos to watch of various sea life.
National Aquarium in Baltimore, Maryland – with many links of photos and videos.
National Zoo in Washington, DC – has a varied selection of animal webcams. There are ones for flamingos, cheetahs, gorillas, pandas and lions, just to name a few.
San Diego Zoo in California – famous as one of the greatest zoos in the country. It is also renowned for its panda webcam. There is also a webcam on elephants, apes and polar bears.
Cleveland Metroparks Zoo in Ohio – videos showing many of the animals.
Woodland Park Zoo in Seattle, Washington – interesting web cams of bears and penguins along with some great shill photos of the animals.
Riverbanks Zoo and Gardens in Columbia, S.C. – its web site has ‘Zoo View’ which show live action of the monkeys and other animals from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. each month they feature different animals.
Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium in Pennsylvania – has a great live cam with tigers and polar bears.
A interesting online newsletter about zoos and aquariums worldwide is Zoo and Aquarium Visitor. It provides the latest up-to-date information on care of animals in hundreds of facilities around the world. It also has some remarkable general interest stories of people and events occurring at zoos and aquariums.
Directory of American Zoos has a fabulous web site listing zoos across the country. Besides zoos, aquariums, there are also wildlife sanctuaries and preserves listed. By checking on a state you can find listings for these animal facilities, along with its location, size and type of animals. You may not have been aware of before checking this directory of some of the wildlife zoos and marine aquariums in your own region.
Enjoy America’s zoos and aquariums by celebrating and appreciating them in your own backyard during the month of June and all year round.