Stuck at Home? Take a Digital Trip to the Zoo

Virtual zoo and aquarium tours during coronavirus isolation.Virtual zoo and aquarium tours during coronavirus isolation.
Virtual zoo and aquarium tours during coronavirus isolation.Virtual zoo and aquarium tours during coronavirus isolation.

Stay-at-home orders mean our pets are getting even more love than usual during the COVID-19 outbreak. Cats and dogs are loving the quarantine, but what about the more exotic creatures living in aquariums and zoos? Though these institutions have shut their gates, many are offering digital opportunities to interact with animals and their handlers.

For young animal lovers, these virtual visits offer a fun way to break up the routine of life without school. For parents, they provide a much-needed break from acting as guardian, teacher, and entertainer all at once.

Bring the Zoo to You

As a thank you to institutions around the country for “bringing education and fun to you through online events and resources,” The Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) has compiled a full calendar of events for animal-loving families to enjoy. Zoos and aquariums are updating the calendar regularly as they join in on the fun.

Here are some highlights:

  • Lincoln Park Zoo: Tuesdays and Thursdays, the experts at this Chicago zoo offer Instagram tours from 9:30AM to 2:00PM. Wildlife enthusiasts can check out highlights on the Zoo’s Instagram Story any day of the week.
  • Monterey Bay Aquarium: Every day from 7 to 7 (Pacific Daylight Time), a series of ten webcams look in on the action at this California aquarium. You can swim with sharks, frolic with sea otters, and even relax to the crashing waves of Monterey Bay.
  • Tulsa Zoo: The Online Zoo School offers five days worth of educational programming every week. Past weekly topics have included Foxes, Africa, and Reptiles. Check out the Zoo School’s website for upcoming themes. The site also features printable and downloadable activities for lazy weekends.
  • Virginia Living Museum: Beginning with Diet of the Day at 8AM and ending with Night Night Nature at 8PM, the Virginia Living Museum offers a full day of fun, educational activities everyday.

That’s just a very small sampling of the zoo and aquarium programming going on all over the country. AZA’s calendar features over 40 different events for most weekdays.

A Digital Field Trip

The pandemic is an overwhelming time for everyone, but it’s especially hard on parents who are adjusting to a new way of life. Organizations like the AZA and their members recognize that we’re all in this together. Check out their calendar for dozens of opportunities to take a digital field trip today.

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