With many districts extending the 2010-2011 school year into early June (necessary for some in order to cover snow days), we are quickly moving into our summer crowd, which includes many return visitors, as well as first-timers. The horticulture department has been busy this year with the replanting of the exterior beds at the DWA, also the result of the previously mentioned “snow days.” Over the years, we have learned which indoor plants best fit each niche in the rainforest, based on the vegetation needed for food, nest building, roosting or merely hiding to watch the people below.
The late school year made it easier to recruit students to assist us with our annual celebration of World Oceans Day, June 8th. It is always fun to interact with our guests on these special days. World Oceans Day follows Earth Day (April 22) and is an excellent means of reminding everyone that approximately 71% of the Earth’s surface is covered in water.
The remodeling of the area which has been the site for the Palau exhibit since the opening of the DWA in October 1992, is now complete. Additional species will be added but the construction part of the Night Reef is over, allowing for a more realistic glimpse of adaptations made by some of the most intriguing creatures that are active in the dark depths of the oceans.
As our baby Orinoco crocodiles outgrew their exhibit near the Vampire bats and bugs corner in the Orinoco rainforest, we were pleased to be able to temporarily replace them with The Smallest Crocodilian – the Dwarf Caiman.
New in the Mundo Maya is the overhead platform for the Mayan Performers. Located to the side of and above the Temple of the Jaguar, this should allow for easier visibility of the dancers and better traffic flow during the weekend performances.
If you have had lunch in Café Maya and was seated near the windows overlooking the Cenote, you are aware that this is the best “birdwatching” spot in the facility. In order to better provide more seating throughout the facility for those needing a short rest, or merely a chance to look overhead for our many birds in free flight, we are placing additional wooden benches throughout the building. For those wanting to become more familiar with and be able to see more of these brilliantly colored birds, the article What’s Up There? describes some of the more obvious Tanagers that can be seen in the Mundo Maya rainforest.
Thanks for your continued support and be sure to stop by during the summer.