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Rainforest Falls
Towards the end of summer, The Buffalo Zoo finished and opened a major project. Rainforest Falls is a huge indoor exhibit with around 20 different species of animals. A lot of the species live together, including capybaras that live with caimans and ducks, capuchen monkeys that live with howler monkeys, piranhas that live with a giant anaconda, and several different birds that can fly wherever they want in the 80 degree paradise.

I've had my zoo membership for two years now, but it's value skyrocketed since Rainforest Falls opened. Even in the middle of winter, I can spend an hour or two in 80 degree sunshiny weather. The meteorologists are very good there. They predict rain every day at noon and 3:00 PM. I HIGHLY suggest going when it rains. And it seems that right after the rain, the sun comes out and the food comes out! Feeding time is best experienced when no-one else is there, because the birds will swoop down and perch right in front of you if you are careful. It's fun to see kids run around in awe, but it also pretty awesome to be the only ones in the rainforest.

Now, could you compare it to a Disney exhibit? Probably not. Sometimes the signs and plexiglass take away from the experience, but the waterfall is impressive when you are standing on a small rope bridge right in front of it. This place is huge for the zoo. It's a step towards a modern, natural looking. and exciting zoo, just like the river otters and sea lions were. The zoo still maintains its historical buildings and exhibits too, but people who are used to the Buffalo Zoo the way it has been will be happily surprised by what's inside Rainforest Falls.

Ok, plug time: A single-plus membership is only 55 dollars. Each time you go, you can bring a guest for free, and the whole thing pays for itself in just a couple visits. The best thing about having a membership, is that if you decide you want to go an hour before the zoo closes and just catch a couple things, you can. Or if you want to just spend 2 hours sitting in one place you can.

There is talk of more and more new things coming too. This coming winter and spring, zoo people will see a new zoo animal hospital, as well as a new children's zoo. The children's zoo is going to be based on a farm, and is expected to blow th old children's zoo area out of the water. Hey, just because I don't have kids, doesn't mean I don't like to pet the cow and the donkey too.

Photos courtesy of Sage and statPaige on Flickr through their Creative Commons licensing. Please check out more of their photos, and search "Buffalo Zoo" on Flickr to see some pretty amazing stuff.
By loosgroov on November 7, 2008 at 12:52pm EST Topic(s): buffalo_zoo animals buffalo zoo

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