Houston Zoo Geriatric Enrichment Programs

The staff at the Houston Zoo takes special care to provide physical and mental activity and an enriching environment for the zoo’s large and flourishing population of older animals. They include Thai, a 48-year-old elephant; Allison, a 30-year-old lemur, who receives acupuncture treatments, and an orangutan named Cheyenne, who is 41 and serves as a surrogate mother for young orangutans whose mothers won’t nurture them. “Even though we know that everything has its lifespan, the hardest part of our job [is] to see them go,” said Lynn Killam, assistant curator of primates. Houston Chronicle (tiered subscription model) (2/19)

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