Celebrate Planet Earth
CLEAN UP, CREATE AND CONNECT!
The Rosamond Gifford Zoo kicks off a four-day conservation celebration starting on Earth Day, April 22 and culminating with World Penguin Day on Sunday, April 25. The zoo will offer activities to empower our community to make a difference in protecting wildlife and the environment by taking action and making sustainable choices.
Visitors and participants will receive a free packet of Carbon Converting Wildflower seeds from American Meadows on Thursday and Friday and a free white pine sapling from Bartlett Tree Experts on Saturday and Sunday while supplies last.
Minoa Bottle & Can is facilitating a bottle and can drive to benefit the animals of the zoo! Bring returnable bottles and cans to the zoo between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. on Earth Day, April 22 and follow the signs to drop-off in the zoo parking lot. You may also bring returnables to Minoa Bottle & Can’s Minoa or Chittenango locations Thursday through Sunday, April 22-25 -- just indicate they are for the Rosamond Gifford Zoo.
Here is the rundown for the zoo’s Celebrate Planet Earth programming:
Thursday, April 22 -Rescheduled for Tuesday, May 4
Join employees from Target and ACR Health in volunteering to help spruce up the zoo grounds on Earth Day! Family, school and corporate groups can sign up to help with weeding, raking, mulching and trash pickup. Volunteers will gather at the zoo by 9 a.m. to receive their cleanup assignments. To sign up to volunteer, please email Heidi Strong at [email protected].
Join us for our Earth Day Spring Cleanup at the zoo - OR do a cleanup in your own neighborhood and share it via the Earth Challenge App from earthday.org. Download the app and enter the Organization Code AZA2021 to document the amount and types of plastic you rescue from the landfill as part of the Association of Zoo's & Aquariums' (AZA) citizen science campaign to compile global data on environmental pollution. Share your cleanup and planting photos with hashtags #syracusezoo and #CelebratePlanetEarth for a chance to win a special prize!
Interested in documenting wildlife and nature? Join the AZA citizen science bioblitz to compile info on species of plants and animals you observe between April 16 and June 13. Use the free iNaturalist app at inaturalist.org to identify flora and fauna you spot and log your observations at inaturalist.org/projects/party-for-the-planet-2021.
VIRTUAL CONSERVATION CLASSES
Friday, April 23
Tune in for a day of FREE virtual programs. Learn about conservation, recycling, endangered species and how to create healthy habitats with online presentations from the zoo education team and our conservation partners. Meet threatened and endangered species and the people who care for them at the zoo, interact with educators and learn how you can help wildlife and the planet with your everyday actions.
Join our education team at 9 a.m. Friday for a Zoom webinar to introduce the day's classes. Attend the free webinar at
https://zoom.us/j/95646179251?pwd=M0o1RTU4ZTUxRlR6K0lCWjZCSEloQT09 using passcode 288894 to access the classes.
Here is Friday's virtual class schedule:
9 a.m. Introduction with the Education Team at Rosamond Gifford Zoo.
9:10 a.m. Spring has Sprung! Spring animal activities.
9:23 a.m. SUNY- Environmental Science and Forestry Tree IDs
10 a.m. Meet the Tenrecs LIVE!
10:10 a.m. Greening USA Biodiversity presentation
11:14 a.m. Red Wolf Keeper Chat LIVE!
12 p.m. Technology Alliance of CNY Climate Change with NewsChannel 9 Meteorologist Jim Teske
1 p.m. Nature Journaling with Zoo Educator Ben
1:30 p.m. SUNY- ESF Galapagos Turtles presentation
2:38 p.m. Meet Mortoise the radiated tortoise – LIVE
2:55 p.m. Career Talk with Educators from the Zoo Education Team, plus a look at SUNY-ESF and Jefferson Community College Zoo Tech programs
PARTY FOR THE PLANET
Saturday, April 24
The zoo’s annual Party for the Planet is back on zoo grounds! Come to the zoo for this fun and educational event highlighting conservation projects happening in CNY and around the world. Make the rounds to exhibitors like Greening USA, Cornell Cooperative Extension and the SUNY-ESF Snailblazers. We’ll have keeper chats featuring endangered species and more. Free with zoo membership or admission.
Party for the Planet is a collaborative education event held by the Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA) member institutions in support of their shared missions of wildlife conservation and saving endangered species.
Exhibitor Tables Open -- 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Keeper Chat Schedule:
10 a.m. -- Outreach Animal Greeter - Upper Lobby
11 a.m. -- Red Wolves Keeper Chat - Red Wolves Exhibit, Wildlife Trail
12:30 p.m. -- Primate Keeper Chat - Primate Park
1 p.m. -- Outreach Animal Greeter – Upper Lobby
2 p.m. -- Asian Elephant Keeper Chat – Helga Beck Asian Elephant Preserve
3:30 p.m. -- Giant Pacific Octopus Keeper Chat - Octopus Exhibit, Upper Lobby
WORLD PENGUIN DAY
Sunday, April 25
Join the zoo’s penguin team at the Penguin Coast exhibit to learn about Humboldt penguins, the threats they face in the wild and what you can do to help. Stop by outdoor tables to play games and learn about sustainable fishing, what fish the zoo’s penguins like to eat, how the zoo cares for its penguin colony, and more. From 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., paint a rock to take home or donate it to the penguins to use for their nests. There will also be a raffle of penguin paintings and other items to help support penguin conservation in the wild.
The zoo’s reservations system remains in effect along with mask and social distancing protocols. Reservations through Sunday, April 25 will open starting April 16. CLICK HERE to find information on how to reserve your zoo visit.