By Paul Rhodes
Tanganyika Wildlife Park opened its all-new Trouble Maker’s Cove this past weekend, with new otter and penguin exhibits, just in time for Spring Break.
Tanganyika has 37 black-footed African penguins and two Asian small-clawed otters who live within the pools of Trouble Maker’s Cove, along with Luna, an albino American alligator. Trouble Maker’s Cover is a new exhibit area created at Tanganyika especially to house these aqueous animals in a watery habitat.
“We enclosed our former outdoor exhibit area for these animals, and did some other enhancements, as well,” said Matt Fouts, assistant director of Tanganyika Wildlife Park. Fouts said the improvements, totaling nearly $450,000, will improve the exhibits for both the animals and the visiting public.
“This has been our biggest addition to the wildlife park since we opened,” said Fouts. The indoor pool area for the park’s penguins has elevated viewing areas for visitors, and the penguins can move around from the pools to other parts of the exhibit.
Just outside the penguin exhibit, on the east side of the building, a new otter exhibit has been constructed, featuring a pool and water enhancements for the otters, as well as other terrain.
Luna, the park’s albino alligator, also has a new exhibit area within the building. Luna is one of just 40 albino American alligators, said Fouts.
The wildlife park already has had some breeding success with its penguin population, said Fouts. Two penguin chicks were born at the park just within the past week.
Although the park’s two otters are both females, Fouts said Tanganyika hopes to acquire a male otter in the future and launch a successful breeding program with that species.
A grand opening ceremony and ribbon cutting was held on Saturday, March 18. The exhibit and park opened for the season just the day before on March 17, just in time for the Wichita area Spring Break.
Tanganyika Wildlife Park is accredited by the Zoological Association of America, and began operating in 1986, opening to the public in 2008. Located on the east edge of Goddard, just off Kellogg/Highway 54, Tanganyika’s primary goal is the conservation of animals. The park contains some of the most rare and endangered species in the world, and gives guests unique ways to learn and interact with some of these species, in order encourage stewardship and education.
The park is dedicated to helping visitors improve their connection with the wonders of the animal world and to be one of the premier facilities for breeding endangered species. For more information, visit twpark.com.