Staff at Zoosiana – Zoo of Acadiana have been working to keep all of the nearly 800 animals safe and warm since this week’s sub-zero temperatures began Sunday night. Lea Loftin, director of marketing at the zoo, said all of the animals are alive and safe, but the zoo is currently closed to the public and without water due to frozen and busted pipes. She said zoo staff have been filling up containers from off-site sources to bring back to the animals.
Some animals are being kept indoors, including tortoises, geese, marmosets and others, while others' regular sleep houses have been outfitted with space heaters and heat lamps.
“We’ve been stringing up heaters everywhere we can,” said Katy Dease, the zoo’s educational keeper. “We’re trying not to blow a breaker.”
Dease spent part of her morning feeding and checking on animals that are used in the Zoo Live shows including Douglas, a Eurasian eagle-owl; Persia, an African serval; Bissell, a lesser anteater; and an inseparable fox-and-hound duo Lady and Champ, a Rhodesian Ridgeback hound and a red fox, respectively. All appeared comfortable and ready for mealtime.
In addition to caring for all of the veteran occupants of the zoo, keepers also now have five baby goats that were born to three different mothers over the past two days. All are healthy and staying warm indoors near heat lamps.
Loftin said they hope to re-open the zoo this weekend once the temperature rises, adding that people can keep an eye on the zoo’s Facebook page for updates.