When the Buttonwood Park Zoo opened Rainforest, Rivers & Reefs, sponsored by Stoico/FIRSTFED, in July of 2017, it was the first new exhibit to open at the Zoo in almost two decades. This project was completed under the Zoo’s 15-year “Master Plan” and is home to several endangered species of small primates, colorful parrots, river turtles as well as magnificently colored tropical fish and corals, jellyfish and seahorses. Since the opening over two years ago, the Zoo has been able to expand this world-class exhibit not once, but twice.
Thanks to an innovative, and relatively unseen transfer chute system, Zoo-goers will be able to visit some of their favorite primates, tropical birds and tortoises in a brand new outdoor habitat. This habitat is now open to the public.
Rainforests, Rivers & Reefs boasts an impressive 265 feet of transfer chute that allows each primate species to move through the multiple indoor and outdoor habitats. Offering animals the option of choice is one of the best forms of enrichment, which stimulates each animal’s natural behavior and provides variety in their daily routine.
“The transfer chute design in Rainforest, Rivers & Reefs allows the Zoo the ability to rotate species into multiple habitats,” said Keith Lovett, Zoo Director. “Not only does the rotational management in these habitats benefit the animals overall welfare by increasing stimulation, but it is a rewarding experience for the guest as well.”
The Zoo is located at 425 Hawthorn Street in New Bedford and is open from 9:00 am until 5:00 pm, with the last admission at 4:15 pm. Ticket prices for non-New Bedford Residents are $10 for adults/$6 for children 3-12; Ticket prices for New Bedford Residents are $7.50 for adults/$4.50 for children 3-12. For more information about the Zoo’s programs, animals and exhibits, visit www.bpzoo.org.