OKC Zoo celebrating World Turtle Day with several activities

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OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – The Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden is celebrating World Turtle Day this weekend by holding several activities for families to enjoy.

On Saturday, guests with reservations for the Outdoor Safari Walk, the zoo’s all-outdoor, modified trail through the park, are invited to participate in the day’s activities from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Activities include a special scavenger safari for kids, bio-facts, animal ambassadors and photo opportunities. And, the zoo will be sharing a series of live “turtle talks” on Facebook from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., focusing on turtle conservation – and how you can help.

The World Turtle Day scavenger safari (for kids 11 and under) encourages kids to find six species of turtles while exploring the Outdoor Safari Walk trail and correctly determine their conservation status using the information posted at their habitats. Scavenger safari cards will be available from zoo team members at the start of the Safari Walk trail.

OKC Zoo African Spurred Tortoise credit Katie Porth

The “shellebration” continues with live turtle talks on World Turtle Day hosted by the Zoo’s turtle experts. Join us on Facebook for the following live talks to learn more about the Zoo’s turtles and the efforts we are taking to protect wild populations and habitats: 9:30 a.m. (Galapagos Tortoise), 10:30 a.m. (Central American River Turtle) and 11:30 a.m. (Burmese Brown, Black and Star Tortoises).

Galapagos Tortoise Max OKC Zoo

Turtles fans will also have the opportunity to purchase a turtle conservation wristband, the newest design in the Zoo’s series of animal-themed wristbands. The wristbands will be available for purchase at the stroller window located in the zoo’s entry plaza. Cost is $2 per wristband with all proceeds supporting the zoo’s conservation initiatives. 

World Turtle Day, established in 2000 by the American Tortoise Rescue, brings global awareness to the importance of protecting our world’s turtles and tortoises and their native habitats. Turtles have roamed the planet for 200 million years, yet global turtle populations are rapidly declining due to threats from the exotic pet trade, hunting and habitat destruction, zoo officials say.

The OKC Zoo is home to 26 vulnerable, endangered or critically endangered species of turtles.

OKC Zoo Three-toed box turtle; Credit-Katie Porth

The zoo is open daily and taking online reservations for its Outdoor Safari Walk, which takes guests on a modified pathway through the park to view a majority of the zoo’s outdoor animal habitats. Online reservations are required for all guests and ZOOfriends members wanting to experience the Outdoor Safari Walk and limited each day to ensure adequate social distancing between guests. Zoo hours are 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Outdoor Safari Walk reservations will be available from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. daily at this link.  

Click here for more information on the Oklahoma City Zoo.

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