We arrived shortly after opening and there were only a couple other people there. Right away we were met by a staff member and unlike other "zoo" type places we didn't just walk around and look at the animals; we were basically given a guided tour.
The zoo area isn't that big but it's well laid out and never felt too squishy even as it got busier. There are many, many native and non native species to Ontario housed here.
The iguanas were the first reptiles the girls saw and within the first minute learned from the staff member how to tell the males from the females... (the males have much longer tails then the females).
On every cage there are colour coded signs. The green ones are native species to Ontario and the red ones are not native to Ontario. Here's an example of the green ones... it gives a basic description and information about each species. Somehow I didn't take a picture of any of the red ones.
|I wonder if this one will turn into a prince???|
Here Sierra is observing the American Toad habitat to see if there is anything else she could do at home to help make her toads habitat more natural. As it turns out she has done a great job at home!
|An up close view of the American Toad habitat|
One snake that wasn't on the touchable list was the Massassagua Rattlesnake...gee I wonder why???
This snake had what looked like a cut near the end of his tail...
Next up was a bearded dragon. His colour was beautiful. I thought it was interesting that when you touched his skin it was bumpy and rough but when you touched the spikes along his side; which I expected to be sharp, were actually really soft. Reptiles don't have ears like us but have ear holes inplace of ears so he can hear. Unlike the snakes who rely on their tounge to smell.
When we visited it was raining and we weren't prepared for a walk in the rain so we didn't check out the outside trail area. I did see on their website that they have a natural habitat set up outside to encouarage wildlife to live there. Their website also has a resource link HERE you can download to help various species by creating natural areas in your own yards. You can bet we will be making a hibernation hole for snakes and a hotel for other critters. We already have a toad city in the making :)
We spent about 2 hours here without exploring outdoors. You could definietly rush through faster if you didn't explore so many touching tanks but...what fun would that be?
Overall we were very impressed. You leave feeling like you got your moneys worth and more. We all learned new things and could easily go back again and learn more. Our guide was wonderful. She was very knowledgeable and happy to answer any and all questions. We definitely recommend you spend an afternoon here if you have any reptile or amphibian lovers in your household.
Scales is currently applying for a grant which we ran home and voted for them. You can vote once a day until voting ends. They are trying to build a turtle hospital as the closest one is in Peterborough. There are little to no grants available which are able to be used for rehabilitation of animals. With so many endangered species in Ontario it seems to me there should be more grants for rehabilitation! If you'd like to help them try to receive this grant please visit THEIR facebook page by searching for Scales nature park. Like their page and vote for them to receive the grant! All the details are on their facebook page.