Wild in Winter

Winter is taking its time arriving in Chicago, and that’s fine with me—our unseasonably mild temps have been pleasant. Of course, the animals at Lincoln Park Zoo are prepared for the first snowstorm to hit, as are the landscaping crews who make our grounds beautiful and accessible when the white stuff falls.

As you’re likely aware, Lincoln Park Zoo only houses animals outdoors that are native to habitats with similar climates to Chicago. And all animals have the option to come indoors whenever they choose.
Our roughest winter doesn’t compare to the conditions in the Himalayas, where the snow leopard calls home. Our heaviest snowfall is nothing to the Sichuan takin, native to the mountains of China.
While it contradicts the common perception, it gets cold in the desert, particularly in the Mongolian desert where Bactrian camels live. As such, Chicago's crisp winter air is comfortable for our double-humped herd. 
Our flamingos are native to frosty mountainous regions of Chile. Our Amur tigers race outside to roll around in freshly fallen snow. Even our chimpanzees have been known to venture into their yard to collect snowballs and see their breath.
The real force of winter has yet to hit us. It will soon. I, for one, hope we have at least a little snow for the holidays. But even if we don’t, our animals will be ready each day and ZooLights will be shining each night. Bundle up and join us!
Kevin Bell 


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