The Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo will open for its 52nd season this Saturday, and it’s offering a number of new exhibits for visitors in 2017.
The zoo’s Indiana Family Farm section has been renovated with a new pond, and will now feature chickens, pigeons and praying mantis. Other new animals include two Tasmanian devils named Milton and Mischief and a male sitatunga - a type of antelope - named Bam Bam.
Perhaps the biggest change at the zoo this year will be the addition of a two-year-old male lion named Bahati, who will join Ina in the lion exhibit.
The two lions are currently going through an introduction process, and are interacting through a door, where they can see and smell -- but not touch -- each other.
Amber Eagleson is the area curator for the zoo’s African section, and she says the two lions have been acclimating to each other nicely.
“We’ve seen very positive interaction between the two. We just want to see this for another couple of weeks, or… it just depends, before we open that door and allow them to be mixed,” Eagleson said.
Until they’re mixed, Bahati will be out on weekends, and Ina can be seen on weekdays. The zoo will host its opening day on Saturday, April 22, and will be open until October 8.