By Pam Williams, Development Director
SPLASH! North American River Otter Habitat
Help us renovate the exhibit!
One of the older exhibits at the Zoo, the otter pool and holding area are in need of a facelift. Plans are on the drawing board for renovation of the current exhibit to enlarge the usable space, provide more adequate off-exhibit dens and keeper area, and allow for a more visually-pleasing habitat for visitors to observe and enjoy the daily antics of the Zoo’s two North American river otters.
- The overall renovation will increase the land to water ratio, providing more usable space for enrichment and training activities;
- Plans call for a terraced planter at the back of the exhibit, allowing the inclusion of new plants and substrate for digging;
- Glass at the front of the exhibit will allow for close contact between otters and guests, encouraging visitors to the zoo to connect with these amazing animals, while newly designed barriers at the sides and rear of the exhibit will showcase the otters in a much more natural setting;
- Installation of a filtration system will allow us to maintain higher levels of water quality in a more ecologically sustainable fashion;
- The renovation will enclose three mature live trees ;
- There will be two tunnels leading into the back holding area from the enclosure for use by the otters;
- A major goal will be to include an interactive animal training experience combined with educational points;
- The renovation has a strategic, multi-species design that would serve other animals in the future if warranted; i.e. if an expanded otter exhibit was built elsewhere in the Zoo at some point to accommodate an additional number of otters, other species could then be easily transitioned into this renovated space;
- Construction is scheduled to begin Fall 2010 for an anticipated Spring 2011 opening.
Fundraising is currently underway to support this renovation. If you have questions, please call the Zoo’s development department at (916) 808-3713. For contributions of $1,000 or more, your name will be included in a special recognition area at the newly expanded exhibit, sending a message of your commitment to the Sacramento Zoo.