Zoos and aquariums stream footage during closures

Zoos and aquariums stream footage during closures

A view of the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago, which has been streaming footage of their penguins.

A view of the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago, which has been streaming footage of their penguins. (Brian Cassella/Chicago Tribune/TNS)

As the COVID-19 virus causes people around the world to stay at home and self-quarantine, popular tourist attractions are being forced to temporarily shut down. However, several zoos and aquariums across the United States are encouraging people to welcome their beloved exotic animals into their homes through online streaming.

Zoos and aquariums broadcasting webcam footage of their housed animals is nothing new; a quick online search will bring up dozens of webcam feeds from various establishments. However, the worldwide quarantines are prompting certain locations to get creative in order to lift the spirits of the masses.

For example, Chicago's Shedd Aquarium has recently allowed three rockhopper penguins, named Wellington, Edward and Annie, to roam the facility while employees documented their exploration.

"We want these guys to be out and around ... comfortable in their homes," said Steve Aibel, the senior director of animal behavior and training.

According to Aibel, these penguin field trips are not uncommon at the aquarium. However, the nationwide quarantine has given the animals much more time to explore, and the caretakers more space to capture these trips on film.

Meanwhile, over at the Cincinnati Zoo, a series of "Home Safari" live streams are being shown every weekday. The series kicked off on March 16 with Fiona, the zoo's world-famous 3-year-old Nile hippo. Fiona herself became an online celebrity when she survived all odds after being born premature and underweight.

"Let us help make your children's hiatus from school fun and educational," said a statement on the zoo's Facebook page. "Join us for a Home Safari Facebook Live each weekday at 3 p.m. (Eastern Time) where we will highlight one of our amazing animals and include an activity you can do from home."


(TravelPulse is a leading travel authority on the web, providing consumer travel news and insider tips and advice for an ever-changing travel world. Read more stories at travelpulse.com)

Visit Travelpulse at www.travelpulse.com


Need to get away?

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.

Related to this story

Most Popular

Getting a refund from an airline has never been easy, and it hasn't become more so in this time of chaos in the airline industry and elsewhere. I'd welcome you to the Twlight Zone, but anyone who has tried to get an airline refund, even if the flyer has died, has already visited the TZ. Now, with the postponement of the Olympics (and pretty much everything else), we may become permanent ...

Travel may be the last thing on your mind right now, but you aren't going to stay home forever. So the current lull might be a good time to think about what you plan to do when the world starts up again. The big immediate news is that, last Friday, the Department of Transportation issued an Enforcement Notice firmly reminding airlines that DOT means what its rules say: If...

Consumers got no additional protections in the stimulus bill. So, in a follow-up to last week's column on "Airlines Playing Hardball," the hardball game is going into the second inning with no pro-consumer calls from the folks who are supposed to help. The U.S., Canada, Europe, and other areas have established rules for involuntary cancellation that are also...

BAYFIELD, Wis. - Walking atop a frozen stretch of Lake Superior's south shore, Jon Michels paused to look at a 30-foot tall rippled ice wall cascading over a sandstone cliff cave. Then he noted something less obvious than the natural spectacle he had come to see. "It's so quiet out here," he said as he led a hiking tour of what some local marketers are calling "the other" ice caves. The ...

Here's your chance to visit Alaska with an Undersea Specialist-- or take a virtual hike amid the wildflowers in Arizona.. "An important part of family learning is exploring the world together, particularly with the sciences, it is key to allow children to test and experiment and draw their own conclusions," said Jennifer Pace Robinson, vice president of Family...

Even though I looked at coronavirus problems just two weeks ago, the situation has already changed dramatically. Problems initially confined to Asia have expanded to Europe and beyond. Airlines are chopping not only their intercontinental flight schedules but also paring domestic flights as well, and travel within the U.S., overall, has tanked.

For Mika Kanofsky, 17, that place has long been Beaches Ocho Rios. It's not the watersports, the ocean or that he can eat all he likes whenever he likes, it's that the Pennsylvania teen-- and his family-- are embraced and accepted. Beaches Resorts, there are two in Jamaica and one in Turks and Caicos, and part of Sandals, became the first resort company in the world to attain...

Get up-to-the-minute news sent straight to your device.


News Alerts

Breaking News