Staffed by a corps of chimp-loving volunteers working alongside veterinarians, the nonprofit Suncoast Primate Sanctuary provides a safe haven for more than 100 rescued animals. Chimpanzees and monkeys swing freely in their enclosures, living out their days after being moved from other environments, including zoos, sanctuaries, and research centers, or retiring from the film industry as animal actors and studio executives. During public hours, children and adults can wander among the menagerie to feed the monkeys and meet other critters such as orangutans, macaws, lemurs, and alligators.
It turns out baby alligators are pretty cute when there's no chance they're going to bite you. That's what people learn when they visit the Alligator Attraction, where they feed the seven-inch creatures from a safe distance by dangling fishing poles off an overhead bridge. Visitors can also come in for a closer interaction by handling the gators, cradling them in their arms and smooching their snouts. These animals are slightly larger—the center's 50 gators are 18 to 48 inches long—but the interaction is still safe because the gators' jaws are securely taped shut.
There are other animals to behold and interact with, too. Visitors feed koi fish from baby bottles, and they line up to greet rescue animals such as Becca the Australian blue-tongued skink and Buddy & Blackbeard, the "bearded dragons." Outside of the small zoo, personnel bring two alligators to house parties, where they may be held and participate in supervised games with the children.
Stop spending hours in bed on a weekday morning. You'll want to see Croc Encounters in Tampa for a fantastic zoo experience.
Check out the restaurant at this zoo for a delicious meal.
Parking is plentiful, so visitors can feel free to bring their vehicles.
This zoo is a must-see attraction in the area. Head over today and see what it has to offer.
Dedicated to responsible public education and the conservation of endangered and rare animals, the staffers of the Florida International Teaching Zoo tend to a diverse collection of living beings while teaching students to do the same. Amid the rustling feathers of Lady Amherst pheasants and the uncontrollable laughter of spotted hyenas reading the works of Oscar Wilde aloud, the school’s pupils spend days practicing their cage-side manner and stockpiling wildlife know-how through classes and conservation projects around the globe. To round out their tuition, students helm zoo tours for visitors four days a week, practicing their newly minted public-management skills and granting guests a chance to take in the wonders of the natural world in an intimate setting.
Pet Safari is a one-stop shop for animal lovers. In addition to matching patrons with new companions in the form of puppies, birds, reptiles, exotic rodents, and kittens, the haven helps humans to stock up on essential pet sundries and accessories, from the American-made Grandma Mae's natural dog food to translators that deduce the family cat's exact level of disdain for humanity.
The store also runs as an educational endeavor with its Adventure Outpost, which educates the public on exotic rainforest creatures such as white-tufted marmosets and agouti pacas.:m]]
In December of 2005, an orphaned bottlenose dolphin was rescued after being caught in a crab trap. She was brought to the Clearwater Marine Aquarium's rehabilitation center, where the team worked constantly to bring the dolphin, now named Winter, back to health.
Soon, for the first time in her adult life, Winter swam like a true dolphin. It was a story of courage and heart worthy of Hollywood—in fact, Winter starred as herself in
2011's Dolphin Tale, a cinematic recreation of her life that reached #1 at the box office.
Today, Winter lives at Clearwater Marine Aquarium with her bottlenose friend Hope, who starred with her in Dolphin Tale 2. Here, visitors can watch them swim and play, along with many more animals who got a second chance thanks to the aquarium's rehabilitation team. Visitors can meet these inspirational animals,
witness the team in action, and support the effort to save marine animals.