Monday, April 4, 2011

First of the dinos arrive

Posted by: Rebecca Whitham, Communications



Edmontosaurus, Brachiosaurus and Styracosaurus took a long road trip from Texas this weekend and arrived at the zoo this morning to check out their new summer digs. They’ll be joined by Tyrannosaurus, Dilophosaurus, Parasaurolophus and Euoplocephalus arriving tomorrow. Then we’ll spiff up the place, do some planting over the next few weeks and have the exhibit ready to welcome guests come April 30 when our Dinosaurs exhibit opens to you all!

As we unloaded today the animatronic dinos that move, snarl and hiss, zoo visitors couldn’t help but crowd around to see the new arrivals.

While our keepers spend a lot of time using operant conditioning to train our animals to respond to cues and shift between areas—allowing the animals to be active participants in their own care—we found the easiest way to coax a hefty Edmontosaurus into a spot where you want her is just to use a forklift.

Styracosaurus and Edmontosaurus took the road trip up to Seattle with their young ones, including these peeping Edmontosaurus hatchlings.

They have all settled in quite nicely at the zoo…well, all but one.

See, there was one hitch in the process: a baby Tyrannosaurus rex stowed away with these first arrivals but his mom is a full day away, not expected to get to Seattle until tomorrow. So we figured while mom is away, Li’l T (as we call him) can play. Li’l T is out for a joyride around Seattle and the East Side today, hitting up the hotspots as any tourist must. We’ll update you from his travels as soon as he returns! (Here he is leaving the zoo, taking off on his big adventure.)

If you spot him, say hi!

Top photos by Ryan Hawk/Woodland Park Zoo. Bottom photo by Monica Lake/Woodland Park Zoo (aka Li'l T wrangler).

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