At the Conservation Station, Halloween is Bat Day. Last year, they had at least half a dozen activities aimed at teaching kids more about bats. (And don't worry, adults can participate, too.) Our first activity was making bay masks. There were five different mask printouts to color and cut out. They also had a lifesize silhouette of a bat with its wings extended. Kids could kneal in front of it and hold out their arms to see how they measure up to the wingspan. Another station involved walking into a "cave" filled with paper bats. You had to use a flashlight to count the different species and report back how many you found of each. Next, we learned about several forms of enrichment used by cast members to keep the bats entertained. We even tried to lift a bucket of candy using only our pinkies to pull up each link of a chain. That was a lot more difficult than you'd think. We also talked with the bat keepers about how to help bats flourish at home, from reducing the use of pesticides to building bat homes. They also gave us magnets, temporary tattoos, and stickers with photos and facts about bats. It was a lot of fun and a great learning experience.
For a little more animal fun, on October 31, all of the animals receive pumpkins as part of their enrichment program. We enjoyed watching the tortoises trying to eat the giant pumpkins.