Hershey Entertainment & Resorts Marks Earth Day All Year Long
ZooAmerica North American Wildlife Park plays an active role in wildlife and environment conservation and has the numbers to prove it. In celebration of Earth Week, here are five facts you should know about ZooAmerica’s environmental efforts this past year.
1. ZooAmerica was awarded by the National Military Fish & Wildlife Association (NMFWA) for their contributions toward the reintroduction of the beautiful and endangered butterfly, the Regal Fritillary, which has disappeared from regions east of Indiana, with the exception of a single population found at Fort Indiantown Gap National Guard Training Center. ZooAmerica staff has been collecting these butterflies as a source of eggs for the butterfly-rearing and release project.
2. Hershey Entertainment & Resorts owns ZooAmerica and The Hotel Hershey. The Hotel’s Executive Chef recognized that the kitchen discarded a large amount of food scraps during the preparation of their meals and wanted to do something to keep all that food waste out of the landfills. Knowing that much of the food could be used as feed for animals, he approached the animal care staff of ZooAmerica and now the animals at ZooAmerica receive about 6,500 lbs. of food scraps from The Hotel Hershey throughout the year including beef, fish and a variety of produce. These animals sure do eat well!
3. In 2014 the Zoo conducted 27 outreach programs including topics such as Native PA Species, Habitat Program and Endangered Species. These 27 programs collectively reached 286 groups of guests.
4. Pennsylvania’s barn owl population has decreased by 50% since the 1950s and ZooAmerica has stepped in to help! ZooAmerica staff, campers and students of the Milton Hershey School have linked together to create and place owl nest boxes in local barns, including many on the Milton Hershey School property to provide homes for barn owls and maintain natural rodent control.
5. In August 2014, Rainier the mountain lion cub arrived at ZooAmerica, weighing only four pounds, being found malnourished and dehydrated on a porch in Washington State. Because of the expertise and attention of the animal care team, Rainier will be introduced to the adult mountain lion exhibit this summer where the public can finally visit!
Guest Blogger: Grace Gill, Hersheypark Marketing Intern