The only thing better than hunting for Easter eggs yourself is to watch furry critters scratch and tear at decorated papier-mâché eggs stuffed with treats. A hunt of wild proportions, the Naples Zoo at Caribbean Gardens will hide decorated egg piñatas throughout the wild residents’ enclosures, each packed with their favorite toys and treats. Not only does this offer the wild residents a fun little activity during treat time, it is also a blast for visitors to watch tigers, fosas and lions tear through the wrapping in pursuit of their prize.
These activities, though a fun take on the Easter festivities, provide positive enrichment for the animals by breaking the monotony of a regimented feeding schedule. The gift-wrapped treats and strategically placed goodies encourage the animals to actively forage and play. Who says playing with your food is a bad thing? It is part of the zoo’s broad and all-encompassing enrichment program, which includes exhibit design, animal “roommates,” sensory enrichment and behavioral conditioning. Everything is designed and focused with the goal of “increasing the animal’s behavioral choices and drawing out their species-appropriate behaviors, thus enhancing animal welfare,” as dictated by the Association of Zoos & Aquariums accreditation requirements. This all makes for happier, better adjusted animals in captivity, and enhancing zoo residents’ quality of life.
But the fun is not just for the animals. Guests can join in on an Easter scavenger hunt, searching for the wild answers to questions posed through exploring the zoo’s exhibits and signage.
- The Naples Zoo’s wild animal Easter egg hunt will run from April 18-20.
- Admission costs $19.95 for adults, $12.95 for children ages 3-12.
- For more information, visit napleszoo.com.