How Do the Animals Fare in the Cold Temperatures?

Animals Need to Take Extra Precautions During a Cold Snap

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Animals, like humans, need to take extra precautions during a cold snap. 

However, some animals actually benefit from the frigid temperatures. 

When temperatures drop below zero, it takes some extra preparation before we can go outside and face the cold. 

“You’ve got the long underwear, the pants, the snow pants, hats, mittens, hand warmers, etc.,” said Lake Superior Zoo Zookeeper, Lizzy Larson.

However, that’s not the case for some of the barnyard critters. 

“They all have very, very fluffy winter coats so they don’t need coats from us,” said Larson. 

Larson knows some animals are tougher than others and can withstand any temperature. 

“Our tiger especially loves the snow as does our snow leopard and our links.”

But, the lions will avoid the cold by sleeping all day. 

“They aren’t used to this cold temperature so they might be kind of huddling instead.”

While animals from the colder climates are fine with handling the winter, they do struggle in the summer. 

“On those really hot summer days, it’s hard for them to move around and gets really hot for them,” added Larson. 

To help with any potential concerns in the freezing weather, zoo staff will give them straw for a fluffy bed. 

“They also have heated rocks so a lot of the area you don’t see snow on there is actually in floor heating systems in there.”

Many of the zoo animals are also more active during the cold to keep body heat constant. 

Because this is such an active time for the animals, staff encourages folks to visit now and if you do, bundle up!

The zoo is open Thursday through Monday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

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