Wednesday, May 5, 2010
Say Hello, Brillo!
Huh. Volunteer at the zoo. Well that just sounds … cool!
I had been contemplating a way to volunteer in the community for a while but kept getting stuck on my firm belief that I should in no way be entrusted with a child’s self esteem given that a remodeling of my own continues (I’m working on the bedroom at the moment). I was hooked. I went through my initial training in the fall/2007 and spring/2008 and found myself smack among wallabies, sting rays, pygmy goats, and budgies during the summer of 2008. I added animal handling training in the fall of 2008. I now handle snakes, bearded dragons, blue-tongued skinks, turtles, chinchillas, opossums, screech owls, etc.
[I do refuse to handle the chickens/roosters, evil beings one and all. Yes, evil. Hey, you be constantly attacked by a rooster during your childhood and then come talk to me.]
Volunteering at the zoo now allows me to have a small impact on the kids who stare slack jawed at the ball python I’m holding or ooh and awwww over our baby pygmy goats all while satisfying (kinda) my desire for the pet who would not fit so well in a one bedroom apartment.
What does this have to do with Brillo?
Last week, I entered a new realm at the John Ball Zoo: the hospital. The zoo recently received a gift of a new hedgehog – Brillo – who, we hope, will be added to those animals taken on travel zoos and handled within the zoo itself. All new animals at the zoo must be quarantined for a certain period of time so Brillo is currently being housed in quarantine at the zoo’s hospital. In order to make sure Brillo becomes accustomed to human handlers, the zoo asked some volunteers to … come handle her.
Jealous yet? The zoo is always looking for more volunteers.
Meanwhile, if all goes well, look for Brillo later this summer.