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Monday, January 16, 2012

A Closer Look At Busch Gardens New Animal Care Center

Busch Gardens Tampa Bay has been caring for wildlife and wild places for more than 40 years. With an ongoing mission to ensure the health, enrichment and safety of its animals as well as all animals not housed at Busch Gardens, the theme park has been recognized as a global leader in animal care. So it’s no surprise that Busch Gardens is taking their animal care to a new level and introducing a new Animal Care Center the public can appreciate and be a part of.

"We are proud of the care we provide our animals," said Mike Boos, vice-president of zoological operations. "We welcome the opportunity to share our level of care with our guests, and to continue our mission of connecting guests to animals and the natural world. No other zoological facility will offer the unique, up-close experience that this new facility will offer."

The new 16,000-square-foot facility occupies the space where the rhino exhibit is currently located in the Nairobi area of the park. And while the park’s previous animal care facility was located out of the public view, the new center will be there for guests enjoyment giving them tips, facts and demonstrations on all of Busch Gardens’ animals.

The nutrition center features a kitchen similar in set-up to a cooking show on television. Guests will be able to watch educators lead demonstrations several times per day on the planning and preparation of animal diets. Guests will even be able to assist in preparing and handing out food the park provides for its animals.

Over at the treatment center, guests will be able to watch as Busch Gardens’ skilled veterinarians do preventative checkups, treatments and even surgeries on animals. Thanks to glass walls and audio capabilities, park guests will be able to see into the rooms and even talk to the vets as they perform care for the animals. Cameras placed over the exam table will provide unique vantage points guests can’t see anywhere else. And if you have a question during a surgery, zoo educators will be on hand to discuss what’s taking place.

The new facility will also include animal recovery rooms, vet offices and research stations.

And for the future veterinary in the group or for those just curious about animal care, guests can participate in a diagnostic exercise by scanning an interactive activity card at several stations and follow an animal from diagnosis to treatment to blood and lab work to a final outcome.

The new Busch Gardens Animal Care Center opens to the public Jan. 23.

To watch a surgery or help hand out food to Busch Gardens’ animals make sure you look for discounted Busch Gardens’ tickets right here on

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