Page 1

Keepin’ it Wild!

January - March 2017

A digital publication of Zoo Miami Foundation and Zoo Miami.

OUR MISSION: To encourage an appreciation for the world’s wildlife and to help conserve it for future generations.

INSIDE THIS ISSUE: - Florida: Mission Everglades Opening - Baby Animals at Zoo Miami - Wild Valentine’s Day Ideas

Keepin’ it Wild

is a quarterly digital publication of

Zoo Miami Foundation that provides information for the friends, supporters and Members of Zoo Miami.

For more information, please contact: Zoo Miami Foundation 12400 SW 152 Street, Miami, FL 33177 (305) 255-5551 / Zoo Miami Foundation’s Mission To encourage an appreciation for the world’s wildlife and to help conserve it for future generations. Zoo Miami Foundation Board of Directors: Chairperson: Jim Kushlan, PhD. Chair-Elect: Jose C. Romano Treasurer: George Leser Secretary: Patricia Siles, CPA Past Chairperson: Ana VeigaMilton, Esq. Alexandre Hohagen Susan Kahn Kimberly Kalkus Jack Kardys Frank Lopez Kathy McDonald Scott Maddox Marc A. Osheroff Eliot Pedrosa Aliette D. Rodz, Esq. Dr. Michael Rosenberg Ana VeigaMilton, Esq.

Alan Atkinson Dr. Jose Fransisco Barros Sandy Batchelor Jacey Birch Luis E. Boué, CPA Jose Felix Diaz Eric Eikenberg Larry Feldman, PhD Armando Fernandez Diana L. Fitzgerald, Esq. Robert Furniss-Roe Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez Michael Heithaus, PhD EMERITI DIRECTORS

Bernard Klepach David Konfino Daniel J. Licciardi Jack Lowell Manny J. Rodriguez, P.E. Edward Soto Eric J. Stephens Merrett R. Stierheim Lawrence O. Turner, Jr. Diana Udel Andrew H. Weinstein, Esq.

Rodney L. Barreto Vincent L. Berkeley Jennifer Boin Getz Roger Carlton Harlan S. Chiron, MD Ambassador Sue Cobb Linda Coll Ron Esserman William J. Gallwey, III, Esq. Robert W. Hudson, Esq. Sherrill W. Hudson

President/CEO: William W. Moore

LETTER FROM THE CEO Happy New Year Zoo Miami fans and supporters! While 2017 has only just begun, we are already off to an exciting start. We ended last year on such a high note, with the grand opening of our brand new Florida: Mission Everglades expansion on December 10, 2016. Our guests have had many positive things to say, and wonderful photos to share from our new features and animal exhibits. While the otter slide and crocodile tunnel are surely favorites, Florida: Mission Everglades is filled with so much to explore at every turn – from the up-close-and-personal black bear crawlthrough viewpoint, to the Lostman’s River “airboat” themed ride, to the rickety rope bridge hanging above the alligators. This addition to Zoo Miami truly strengthens our connection to an essential mission: raising awareness and appreciation for the importance of the Florida Everglades. By combining adventurous fun with education, we hope to inspire our visitors to visit the Everglades, and in turn, help preserve it. So far, the opening of Mission Everglades has been a hit – and we’re only getting started. In the upcoming year, you can look forward to events in this wonderful new space, as well as educational programs centered on the theme and new animals.

Zoo Director: Carol Kruse Zoo Admission Hours: 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. daily Last ticket sold at 4 p.m. Editor: Rashielle Teape Contributors: Dolora Batchelor, Nathalie Batista, Cindy Castelblanco, Sara Greene, Julia Klumb, Greg Koch, PhD., Ron Magill, Bill Moore, Victoria Robinson, Carlos Simoes, Melissa Wetzel, Kaitlyn Whisman Layout & Design: Parrot Fish Studio

Photography: Ron Magill

Special thanks to Ana VeigaMilton and the Zoo Miami staff, for without these people, this publication would not be possible.

Of course, this project was only possible through the hard work and support of everyone who contributed. We’ve been fortunate to collaborate with quality organizations like Everglades National Park, Florida International University, and the Everglades Foundation. Through their support, as well as the support of donors like Dr. James A. Kushlan, Dr. Mark Brown and Josie Romano Brown, and the Beth Krone Estate, we will be able to continue expanding our reach in the local community. On behalf of Zoo Miami and Zoo Miami Foundation, I’d like to say a big THANK YOU to everyone who has joined us on this journey. It’s going to be a very exciting year!

You can help support the zoo as we continue to grow! FOLLOW US




Inside This Issue

8 13 FL

4 6

Notes for Members


Florida: Mission Everglades Grand Opening

Adventures in Learning Learn more about our Wild Nights and other programs at Zoo Miami!

Check out some fan photos from our Grand Opening weekend!


Ellie’s Hatch Day

12 13

Fun Factory


Baby Giants

16 18

It’s almost time to meet our newest Zoo Squad mascot

Little Long Legs! Say hello to our 50th Zoo Miami-born giraffe

Zoo Miami welcomed a Giant Eland and Giant Anteater on the first day of winter

Celebrating our Supporters Wild Valentine’s Day Ideas



Now Open at Zoo Miami! 3

NOTES for Members Membership for Two? Chocolate and flowers are sweet, but nothing says romance like endless dates to Zoo Miami for a whole year! This Valentine’s Day, treat your sweetheart to the gift of adventure with a Dual Membership to Zoo Miami! Use promo code LOVE17 and get $14 OFF a Dual Membership to Zoo Miami! Valid from 2/1/17 – 2/28/17. Cannot be combined with other offers.

Can’t Get Enough of Florida: Mission Everglades? Zoo Miami fans are buzzing about our newest features and animal residents in the Everglades-inspired expansion – and our Members have access for a whole year. Want in on the fun? Become a Zoo Miami Member on your next visit and we’ll give you a free Mission Everglades Member T-Shirt!*



* Giveaway promotion only valid for in-park purchases. Available while supplies last.

ME MBE R SE RV I C E S • ( 305) 255- 5551 • M BR@zo o 4

Conservation Conversations 7 PM - Midnight

Great White Sharks with Chris Fischer

as seen on the Discovery Channel

January 19, 2017 7:30 PM – 8:30 PM $20 per person

University Alumni Center 6200 San Amaro Dr. #200, Coral Gables, FL 33146 Join us as Chris Fischer discusses OCEARCH, and their amazing work with great white sharks.

Dine & Dance in the new Florida: Mission Everglades! CLICK HERE to RSVP


Adventures in Learning Zoo Miami Camps Off to a

Roaring Start Cooler weather is a welcome change in South Florida and at Zoo Miami. Our animals become more active, students head back to school, and of course a new Zoo Miami camp season begins! This year we’ve been hard at work thinking of new, fun ways to teach our campers about wildlife conservation. Some highlights have been planting a garden for imperiled native butterflies, feeding giraffes and parrots, as well as creating presents for the enrichment of our animals. Our lessons have focused on conservation issues such as pollution, climate change, and invasive species. The hard work seems to be paying off – so far each of our Mini Camp days have sold out and Winter Camp has been a blast! Don’t miss out and come join us!

School breaks are a stampede of fun at Zoo Miami! • Enjoy special animal presentations • Learn about wildlife conservation • Prepare treats for the animals and much more!


Jan 16, Jan 23, Feb 20, Mar 24

SPRING CAMP: Apr 10-21


Ages 4 - 12 Camp hours: 8:30 AM – 5:30 PM

For more information, please call (305) 255-5551 or e-mail


Go Wild at Night Zoo Miami at night is a whole different animal! During our Wild Night programs, we take you on an exclusive walk through our exhibits featuring our nocturnal, night-loving species. We also show you some behind-the-scenes areas as well as training and enrichment experiences with the animals in our care. This year’s Wild Night tours are held on the second Saturday of each month from 7-9 p.m. and they are open to everyone! We’ve come up with three expeditions for you to choose from that venture into different parts of the zoo. We also accept reservations for private groups!

Mark Your Calendars for These Upcoming Wild Nights!

Jan. 14, 2017: Amazon Trek Feb. 11, 2017: Eat or Be Eaten Mar. 11, 2017: Gentle Giants

Registration now open!

CLICK HERE to Register

Roars, S’mores, and Snores Also, be sure to save the date for our annual camping adventure inside Zoo Miami! On February 25-26 bring your tent and join us for Roars, S’mores, and Snores – a night full of fun and adventure. Do you dare explore the zoo at night?! Tickets are selling fast - find out more at!

Volunteers and Interns

Making a HUGE Difference Volunteers and interns are the pride of Zoo Miami. From high school students to senior citizens – and everyone in between – our team of helping hands are the lifeblood that helps keep us running. So far this year, our Adult Volunteers have delighted in helping at the zoo’s kitchen as well as spreading conservation messages on the walkways. Our Conservation Teen Scientist high school students are pursuing a number of team projects including work with Everglades National Park, native butterflies, and even social media! Many of these students go on to pursue college degrees in science or medicine and write back telling us how important their experience at Zoo Miami was. Last but certainly not least, the Education Department is proud to be hosting two interns from Florida International University to help us with our conservation education programs.

Want to join our pride? Check us out at,, or 305-255-5551! 7

Florida: Mission Everglades Grand Opening! On December 10, 2016, Zoo Miami celebrated the public grand opening of our new Everglades-inspired expansion. Our fans have been buzzing with excitement over the new animal exhibits and interactive features – from the otter slide and croc tunnel to learning more about iconic Florida natives. Here are some favorite moments our guests shared on our social media channels!


sF y Jame Photo b




ia Pe

aud by Cl

Photo by Amanda Hopkins 8

by ca



Photo by fher rerav


o ichayla O’D

Photo by M

nie Avila

Photo by Stepha


by Tan

ia As


Share your favorite Mission Everglades Moments with us!

Photo by Jeri

Fobb Payne

y Photo b

Rojas Justine


You’re invited to Ellie the Croc’s “Hatch” Day celebration!* Join us as we celebrate Ellie’s debut at Zoo Miami. She’s not only joining the Zoo Squad as the newest member, she is also the official representative for Florida: Mission Everglades. Enjoy complimentary goodies and fun with Ellie, Gigi, Kaz and Pio from Zoo Miami’s Zoo Squad.

llie! E y a D ” h c t a H Happy “ What: Ellie’s First “Hatch”Day Celebration When: February 11 & 12, 2017 10 am to 4 pm Where: Cypress Landing Playground in Florida: Mission Everglades

Welcome Ellie 

zoo Squad


Crocodile & Ellie Facts Habitat: Saltwater habitats near the coastline. (Ellie is right at home at Zoo Miami!) Diet: Fish, aquatic invertebrates, mammals, and birds. (Don’t worry! Her and Pio have become close friends.) Size: Between 9-12 feet. (Ellie’s not even 6 feet tall!) Weight: Between 840 - 2,000 lbs (Ellie spends a lot of time swimming laps around our lake to stay fit!)

g dan ere






Status: Vulnerable. Life Span: Up to 70 years in the wild. Social Structure: Very shy. (However, Ellie is exceptionally bold and lively!) 10

*Zoo Miami admission purchase required. Goodies available while supplies last.

New restaurant coming to Zoo Miami!

As the first-ever air conditioned restaurant at Zoo Miami, Nourish 305 will provide healthy food options prepared with fresh, locally grown ingredients on custom made flatbreads, salads, and sandwiches. The design of the restaurant blends the existing heavy timber wood construction, with an eclectic mix of modern and rustic elements. Featuring custom interior artwork, Nourish 305 will be strategically located at the Zoo Miami entry and will provide views of the new Florida: Mission Everglades.

Everglades Connections Zoo Miami has recently entered into a formal Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Everglades National Park, which paves the way for cross-training of staff, shared educational activities at each other’s locations, and much more. On Friday, February 10 at 10 a.m., we will hold a ceremonial signing of the MOU to coincide with the “hatching” of Ellie, our newest Zoo Squad mascot. We are tremendously proud to be entering a new area of teamwork to save the treasured landscape in our backyard. For those venturing out to Zoo Miami on weekends, keep an eye out for park rangers roaming through our newest Everglades addition! 11

Zoo guests can look forward to a new, novel engagement space at Zoo Miami! The Fun Factory will be located opposite of the Wings of Asia Aviary. Here, guests and staff will work together to build fun enrichment and training items for our animals! The new addition will also feature other amenities like a space for distance learning and web-based educational programs and an herb garden for even more animal enrichment. The Fun Factory will be a unique spot for us to connect our guests even more to our animals and encourage their appreciation for wildlife. Special thanks to Ana VeigaMilton for her support and dedication to the project’s concept.


LITTLE Long Legs! By Kaitlyn Whisman On November 25, 2016 Zoo Miami received an early holiday present that was fourteen months in the making. Zoo keepers eagerly watched for an hour and a half as 5-yearold “Sabra” gave birth to a beautiful female calf. This little girl is the first calf for father, Titan, who was born at Zoo Miami in 2012. Just like human babies need checkups and vaccinations, so do baby giraffes. The calf’s exam occurred the day after she was born to ensure that she was healthy. This checkup is called a neonatal exam. Doing an exam on a baby giraffe is no easy task. Within just twenty minutes of her birth, she was already up and walking! Did you know that an adult giraffe can pack a kick that can be fatal to a lion? Although the calf is not as strong as an adult giraffe, she is still powerful, especially with her legs and hooves. In order to keep the calf and staff safe during the neonatal, we gently restrain her.


Photo by Do lora B atchelo r

How many zoo keepers does it take to hold a baby giraffe? The answer was five! Two people held her body, two held her strong legs, and one stayed by her head. She received vaccinations, and had her umbilical region checked and blood drawn. At a day old she weighed in at a whopping 138 pounds and stood almost six chelor t a B a feet tall! lor by Do The calf was weighed again when she was six days old and had already gained thirty pounds! She was announced to be healthy and is now on exhibit with the six other giraffes in the herd. She is curious and photogenic! Her zoo keepers love watching her grow and hope you come by and visit her at Zoo Miami! 13



On December 21st, 2016 – the First Day of Winter – Zoo Miami welcomed two special babies, right in time for the holidays! First, a Giant Eland was born, weighing in at 60 pounds. She is the eighth Giant Eland born at Zoo Miami. Later that day, the historic birth of a Giant Anteater followed – the first birth of its kind at Zoo Miami! The Giant Eland is now on exhibit with her mother, and the Giant Anteater will take a few weeks to bond with its mother behind the scenes.


Concerts for Conservation The Long Run @ Zoo Miami

Introducing a new concert series at Zoo Miami! Save the date and join us on Saturday, July 1, 2017 for a night of live music and fun with The Eagles tribute band The Long Run at the new Sami Family Amphitheater.

Tickets on sale soon! 15

The Legacy of Wildlife…

Thank You Sandy Allenson

Leaving a legacy at Zoo Miami is a building block for the future and ensures the things you love at the Zoo continue beyond your lifetime. For Sandy Allenson, her love of Zoo Miami started back in 1971 when she and her husband, Herb visited Crandon Park. A Zoo Member since 1981, Sandy has countless memories of her time at the zoo and recalls that her husband’s purchase of a sign from the capybara enclosure at Crandon Park was the start of their support for Zoo Miami. Since then, she has “adopted” many animals and has been a Friends of Zoo Miami Member for years. Growing up in Rochester, NY, Sandy remembers animals in cages and how Zoo Miami drew her back because the animals appeared to be in a more natural habitat. She remembers when Zoo Miami (then Miami MetroZoo) was built, there were promises of great things to come, which she says have been fulfilled over the years, including the ‘critters’, the landscaping, the new exhibits and of course the people, like Ron Magill. Over time, Sandy decided to make Zoo Miami Foundation one of the main foundations she would support. We thank you for being a tremendous ambassador for Zoo Miami and your continued support in helping to preserve the world’s wildlife. As a legacy donor, she is helping to perpetuate conservation and secure vital education and animal care programs in the future. Thank you Sandy!

If you would like to join Sandy in helping to ensure Zoo Miami is here for generations to come and want more information in becoming a legacy donor, contact Development today at 305-255-5551! ZMF Board Directors and staff recently attended the Association of Fundraising Professionals’ (AFP) National Philanthropy Day to honor both Marta Weeks-Wulf, and Bruce & Martha Clinton of the Clinton Family Fund for their longstanding support of Zoo Miami.

Thank you for making a difference!


Ron Magill with Bruce and Martha Clinton

ZMF Board Chair Jim Kushlan, PhD. and Dr. Michael Rosenberg

Giving is a Family Affair

Dr. Mark Brown and Josie Romano Brown, ZMF Advisory Council Member, wanted to show their support toward Florida: Mission Everglades, and got the entire family involved in the action. Why did you first choose to get involved with Zoo Miami? Josie: Our children, and now our grandchildren, have always enjoyed and been awed by the experience of seeing the many different animals representing regions of our Earth. We are so fortunate to have such an inspiring and conservation-focused Zoo in our community.

As a supporter, how did you decide to give toward Florida: Mission Everglades? Josie: Mark especially has been drawn to experience the flora and fauna of the Everglades for many years. Not a native of Florida, he was first introduced to this unique Florida habitat by reading Marjorie Stoneman Douglas’ “River of Grass”. We often plan day outings to the Everglades with our grandchildren.

It’s a family affair with the Brown family! How did you get your children and grandchildren involved in the process of giving? Josie: Our grandchildren love visiting Zoo Miami, and when those grandchildren who live out of town come for vacation, the Zoo trip is a tradition! We came up with the idea of naming the first Florida panther at the Zoo and wanted all of our grandchildren to participate. Therefore, we offered three possible names and they chose Mahala.

What made you choose the name Mahala? Josie: We wanted a name that would reflect the origins of this country, a Native American name. Mahala stands for powerful female.

If you had one thing to tell other Zoo members, what would it be? Josie: Expose your children and grandchildren to the educational, learning and amazing experience of seeing animals, many of whom are endangered, so that they develop an appreciation of the importance of protecting this valuable asset. 17

This Valentine’s Day…

Show Someone You’re Wild about Them Saturday, February 11, 2017 7 – 10 PM Treat your sweetheart to a one-of-a-kind date in our new Florida: Mission Everglades, complete with special animal encounters and a romantic boat ride. RSVP information coming soon!

Give a Lasting Love Engrave a special message or memory on a commemorative brick in our new Florida: Mission Everglades exhibit. Order between 2/1/17 – 2/14/17 and you can add artwork to your brick for free!

CLICK HERE to purchase a brick.

For Your Otter Half

Do you have an animal-loving cutie in your life? Adopt an Otter from 2/1/17 - 2/10/17 and get a Valentine’s Day themed package with free shipping! Your gift will help us care for your favorite animal residents at Zoo Miami.

18 17

CLICK HERE to adopt

Keepin' it Wild Jan. - March 2017  

A digital publication of Zoo Miami and Zoo Miami Foundation.

Keepin' it Wild Jan. - March 2017  

A digital publication of Zoo Miami and Zoo Miami Foundation.