Gourd toys used to enhance zoo animal activity - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Gourd toys used to enhance zoo animal activity

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April 9, 2004

Albany- The Parks at Chehaw's Zoo exhibits give the animals a lot of room to roam, though they can still get bored and lethargic.

A zoo volunteer from Los Angeles has found a solution to the problem. Leigh Adams developed gourd toys. She puts treats that the animals like inside a gourd and covers it with paper mache. A mixture of flour and water is used for the glue. The animals spend time trying to get the goodies out of the gourd toys.

They've been a huge success at the zoos in San Diego and Los Angeles, especially with a once cranky tiger.

"We made it a pig and he attacked the pig and wrestled it to the ground and he held it and took naps holding onto his paper mache pig," Adams said. "It was magnificent."

If you're going to the gourd show at Chehaw this weekend, your kids can help decorate some of the gourd toys that will go to animals in the zoo.

Chehaw's rare red wolf and the cheetahs are some of the animals that will get gourd toys on Sunday around one p.m. Zoo officials expect it to be quite and show and fun for the kids to watch.

posted at 11:14 p.m. by brannon.stewart@walb.com