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Uploaded on May 25, 2009
In honor of Memorial day we decided to provide the alligators with a summer feast of watermelon, and yes we know alligators don't normally eat watermelon... this is called enrichment.
Enrichment is a way we can provide our animals with mental and physical stimulation. We do this to tempt the natural inquisitiveness of animals in our care and relieve the regularity and boredom that readily available food, shelter and safety provide.
The goal of enrichment is to increase activity and stimulation levels in the captive environment. This may stimulate natural behaviors, increase activity, decrease stereotypical behavior and generally enhance the animals well being.
Some observations we made from this enrichment session were; the alligators seemed to enjoy crunching up the melon. Some of them consumed all of it but most of them spit out the rind. They all ingested the pulp of the melon and Doofy (the large alligator) got the added bonus of crushing it.