A FORTY YEAR FAVORITE: THE ZOO'S HARPY EAGLE IS RELOCATING TO A NEW ZOO - 2012
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE June 21, 2012
Tara Henson (405) 425-0219/O, (405) 919-9038/C or [email protected]
Candice Rennels (405) 425-0298/O, (405) 412-6172/C or [email protected]
A FORTY YEAR FAVORITE: THE OKC ZOO’S HARPY EAGLE IS RELOCATING TO A NEW ZOO
South of the Red River a new home and a female companion await the Zoo’s harpy eagle who will be relocating to Dallas Zoo at the end of June. Since 1972, the Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden has been home to this mighty and majestic bird of prey who has become a favorite among zoo guests.
The Zoo’s 41 year old male harpy eagle is one of only 15 harpies in the United States. Due to large scale deforestation of their native habitat range and poaching, harpies are one of the many endangered birds in Latin America and protecting their declining population is imperative. Through the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) Species Survival Plan (SSP), a cooperative breeding program was created to help ensure genetic diversity and demographic stability in North American zoos. While at the Zoo, the harpy was paired with two different females but never fathered any offspring so his caregivers were excited with the SSP’s recommendation to relocate him to fellow AZA-accredited Dallas Zoo in hopes he will successfully breed with their female.
Harpies are one of the largest eagles in the world, weighing an average of 18 pounds. And like most eagle species, the female harpy is almost twice as large as the male. With its seven-foot wingspan, harpies are designed for speed and agility to easily navigate throughout rainforests. They have a very distinctive look, with feathers atop its head that fan into a bold crest when the bird feels threatened.
Visit the harpy eagle before he heads south and attend the Zoo’s regularly scheduled “Bird of Prey” weekend Keeper Connection at 1:30 p.m. During the Keeper Connections, meet the harpy eagle’s care givers and see what “departing” enrichment treats and/or activities they have planned for him before he leaves the Zoo.
There’s something fun for everyone at the Oklahoma City Zoo. Visit Oklahoma’s #1 attraction and one of the top three zoos in the country as named in the 2012 10Besties Readers' Choice Travel Awards! The Oklahoma City Zoo is a proud member of Oklahoma City’s Adventure District located at the crossroads of I-44 and I-35 in. Hours of operation are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Buildings close at 4:45 p.m. daily. Now through September 1, the Zoo stays open until 8 p.m. on Saturdays only, with exhibit buildings closing at 7:45 p.m. Regular admission is $8 for adults, $5 for children ages three-11 and seniors ages 65 and over. Children two and under are admitted free. Become a Zoo fan at http://www.facebook.com/okczoobg or follow us on Twitter @okczoo. To learn more about these and other happenings, call (405) 424-3344 or visit okczoo.com.