With the zoo closed due to the coronavirus, these penguins were gifted a new way to stay entertained. The penguins were used to visitors to keep them entertained.
Someone donated a bubble machine to the zoo while it was closed, and the animals had fun chasing the bubbles around their enclosure.
This particular bubble machine was used at the Newquay Zoo in Cornwall, England. The penguin caretaker Dan Trevelyan said that the bubbles actually help keeps the birds’ predatory instincts sharp.
In the wild, the penguins are marine predators who chase fish. So, the bubbles give them new colors and shapes to track.
A lot of zoos use props to enrich and entertain the animals. Usually interacting with visitors helps entertain the animals, but many zoos had to close for a while due to the coronavirus.
Research has shown that animal enrichment is just as important as a nutritious diet and proper veterinary care.
Another zookeeper even tried giving a soccer ball to a lion and the lion played with it just like a cat would. An aquarium had a violinist come and play for the dolphins who were bored without enrichment.
One aquarium in Japan even asked people to have video calls with their eels because they were worried the animals would become used to humans not being there and become skittish. Zoos have had to find interesting ways to cope with the coronavirus lockdowns because the animals still need to be taken care of.
Animals have feelings and get bored just like humans do. They need some kind of stimulation even when they are in captivity. Some zookeepers use plants or they hide food for the animals to find.
During the coronavirus lockdown, zoos and aquariums uploaded videos of their animals playing so that they could encourage people to stay home. It was meant to give people something to do online during the quarantine.
Featured image: YouTube.