Grand rapids, Mich- The tiger sat well camouflaged in the spring foliage. His head up as he enjoyed the rays of the afternoon sun. His brother lay well hidden in the shade further up the trail. The two brothers now call the John Ball zoo home in a newly renovated enclosure.
While the main tiger habitat opened in 2014, Yuri and Kuza will soon have an expanded territory that includes a fenced tunnel that allows the brothers to travel from one area to another. The newer part of the habitat will be opened in summer 2015. These Amur tiger brothers also share their habitat with a 9 year old female named Nika.
The Idema forest realm and Crawford tigers of the forest realm are just a few of the newer attractions at the John ball zoo. An area for Tree house and fort building has been added so children can take advantage of playing outside and using their imagination. A ride in the funicular located at the front gates brings visitors to the very top of the zoo and just steps away from the Tigers new home range.
Families can also try out the zip-line, rope course and camel rides. For a more up close encounter some may find the sting ray touch tank or petting zoo more to their liking.
Your zoo adventure begins with a beautiful entrance that features a full scale floating dragon in the front pond. After entering the gates visitor’s pass by ducks and other water fowl. The short walk up the ramp brings you to the Aquarium that houses penguins, fish from fresh water lakes and sea life. The path outside the Aquarium lead visitor’s to the sting ray touch pool.
Next is the amphibian exhibit with over 15 different exotic frog and toad species. The path then takes you passed porcupines and the Budgies encounter. These are also known as Parakeets. Red’s hobby farm and farside trail takes you pass the ropes courses and exotic birds, Lemurs and wallabies encounter..
The turtles exhibit focuses on a natural outdoor setting, with aquatic and land-based turtles in one enclosure. The North American trek part of the zoo showcases Bobcats, Grizzle bears, Mountain lions.
Snow leopards also join this part of the trail as it takes you makes the Spider money island and onto the South American boardwalk where the capybaras, tapir, screamers and maned wolves are all featured.
The African primates exhibit has baboons and Colobus monkeys. The African animals part of the zoo contains warthogs, camels, Lions and chimpanzees.
The Treasures of the tropics building houses, black footed cats, snakes, reptiles and small primates such as the very adorable Goeidi monkeys.
John Ball zoo is a family fun summer vacation!
For more information please go to: http://www.johnballzoosociety.org/
John Ball zoo
1300 W. Fulton St
Grand Rapids, MI 49504
Hours 9am to 6pm