Nutrition Center Campaign
Help us build a secure foundation for our animals’ future!
Ensuring our animals’ continued health and happiness starts with our humans—our keepers, more specifically. They need a proper building from which to prepare food and medication for our residents. And we need your aid in raising funds to finish construction on our new Nutrition Center, the touchstone for all things related to animal care.
Most of us have wanted to be keepers at one time or another, but what does the job entail here at the Conservators Center? In the morning: convening at the Field Kitchen—the old shed with the crooked door that serves as our current Nutrition Center. Bowls, tongs, scales all need to be sorted. Buckets of bleach need preparation. Diet prep becomes an enormous undertaking: all of our animals have special diets with very specific instructions. (Wendy and Tut Fennec Fox, for example, with their tiny teeth, need itty-bitty diced foods.) Dirty dishes amass.
And then, in the afternoon: everyone reconvenes, bearing stories and gifts from their respective journeys into the park. What did Bear Dingo howl about today? Why is Ramsey Leopard grumbly today? Is Wic Tiger being pesky to his lion siblings? After almost two decades of keepers chatting over bowl-washing and towel-laundering, the Field Kitchen has become a human home at the Center.
On behalf of our wolves, tigers, lions, and other critters, the Conservators Center now asks the public to lend a hand in our maturation.
History of our Field Kitchen
Why You Should Help And How
It all comes down to our animals—and maintaining the conditions that allow our humans to care for them. We have just over 80 mouths to feed each day and care for.
In a 40 hour work week, our keepers spend approximately 15 hours solely in the Field Kitchen, doing two hours of diet prep every morning plus an additional hour or two each afternoon cleaning, laundering, washing dishes, organizing food bins, etc. And interns and volunteers probably spend closer to half of their time working in the Kitchen.
Additionally, a better Nutrition Center/Field Kitchen is a better learning tool. Anybody who comes through after a morning of diet prep will walk away more ably prepared to care for a number of exotic animal species. Where else can they even begin to understand the intricate complexities of how to prepare diet sheets for a variety of small cat species, as well as how to guesstimate the proper amount of meat required to satiate a “hangry” lion?
Now that the shell of the building is complete, the Field Kitchen’s interior needs outfitting. Your help is crucial to purchase all the items needed to stock the building—our keepers can’t work in an empty space, after all. In addition to shelving, bins, work tables, cutting surfaces, & hose reels, there is the epoxy floor, stainless steel commercial sinks, garbage disposals, and water heater to fund. We need cabinets, tool racks, and further gravel, landscaping, and outdoor lighting.
Our next phase will include eaves, overhangs where keepers can stay dry while working with meat outdoors.