SCOTTSBLUFF, Neb. (KNEB) While temperatures drop, the Riverside Discovery Center works to keep the animals and visitors happy.
The zoo is a popular place to visit, even in the winter. Most of the animals remain on exhibit, even in the cold months.
The petting zoo moves inside in colder temperatures, and heaters help the animals and guests stay warm. Also, the primates move indoors, since they're used to warmer temperatures.
Lots of the exhibits are indoors permanently, like the Discovery Center, which houses tropical animals.
Outdoor animals have shelters which they can access year-round. Their enclosures serve many purposes: heating, cooling, and even privacy.
To keep birds more comfortable in the cold weather months, The zoo uses heat lamps, wind screens, and even heated water bowls. The fish and aquatic birds have aerators to keep the water from freezing.
"We take a lot of precautions here at the zoo to make sure our animals are happy and comfortable in the winter.," said Harley Yerdon, a zookeeper at RSDC. "However, some of our animals like our Siberian tiger here are absolutely comfortable in the cold, and absolutely love the winters here in Nebraska."
Some zookeepers even recall the zebras playing in the snow. The zebras go into their enclosures when they want to warm up, but they enjoy being outside, as well.
For guests, a lot of the zoo can be enjoyed indoors. The zoo is getting ready for "Wild Lights" in December.