Feeding Time, GIggy-Style

December 22, 2010 at 2:00 am Leave a comment

Giggy here, Fernbank’s unofficial dinosaur mascot. You might recognize me from my many adventures throughout the museum, but recently I played another role—assistant animal care coordinator.

In addition to the permanent collection of animals used for educational programs, Fernbank is also currently home to a few friendly creatures in the WATER special exhibition. And like all animals (ahem, and stuffed dinos), they need to be fed.

I tagged along with Fernbank’s Environmental Education Specialist, Becky Facer on this task. First stop—picking up the food. No, we didn’t head to a grocery store or a fast food joint. We went to a storage area on Staff Level to pick up crickets and meal worms. (Note: even though I’m a meat-eater, crickets give me the heebie-jeebies.)

Armed with food (crickets and meal worms), a step stool and a mister, we headed to the special exhibition gallery. The tetras were fed first, receiving fish flakes that smelled, well, fishy. We then used a sponge on the end of a long stick to wipe inside of the tank down. (What? They don’t clean up after themselves?)

WOW! The mudskippers are next. They are my favorite, with those bulging eyes on top and the way they flap and flutter around the tank. We fed them mealworms.

Finally, the leopard frogs. There are six adults in this tank, but they are nocturnal (they sleep during the day) (hey, I think I’m part nocturnal!), so they were hiding under the moss. But the tadpoles! So. Many. Tadpoles. Too many to count. The tadpoles are fed special algae pellets.

Then came the crickets for the adult frogs. (Eeeee, crickets!) It was cool to see the adult frogs scamper out of their hiding places for food. And to think, all those little tadpoles could be full-sized frogs.

We are going to need more crickets.


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At Fernbank Museum, there’s much more than dinosaurs and giant-screen films. Even with our website, e-newsletters, Facebook pages and Twitter updates, there’s still a lot we’d like to share with you. This blog is an opportunity for the people that keep Fernbank running and constantly expanding, to share stories from their point of view. We hope you’ll enjoy these first-hand, behind-the-scenes glimpses of what goes into keeping a world-class natural history museum running. As always, we’d love to hear your feedback on these stories, to hear your personal experiences and hear any suggestions for topics. Happy reading!

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