Philadelphia International Airport (PHL) has partnered with the Philadelphia Zoo to bring some of the amazing creatures that reside at America’s first zoo to PHL each month to interact with travelers. The initiative, which started this summer, has been a hit with visitors who are fascinated with the various exotic mammals and birds.
“Seeing these wonderful creatures up close, learning all about their species and what makes each of them unique, and interacting with the Zoo staff has both surprised and delighted passengers,” said Airport CEO Chellie Cameron. “When we formed this partnership with the Zoo we believed it was a perfect fit for our ongoing efforts to create a positive guest experience at PHL, as well as curate a sense of place, and we are very pleased that this program has been well received.”
Thus far, some of the animals that have visited PHL include Camilla, a three-banded armadillo whose favorite snack is mealworms; Shenandoah, a red-tailed hawk; Machu and Picchu, brother and sister blue and gold macaws who love to snack on sunflower seeds; and Meg and Tom, red-footed tortoises whose conservation status is vulnerable due to overhunting.
To enhance the personal interaction with the animals, the Airport has created trading cards for each of them that includes their name, birthdate, species, habitat, favorite snack and conservation status. The cards are given to passengers as a souvenir and a memento of their memorable experience at the airport, and, more importantly, for a better understanding of the animals and their backgrounds, especially their conservation status.
“Philadelphia Zoo is thrilled to partner with Philadelphia International Airport,” said Vikram H. Dewan, Philadelphia Zoo President and CEO. “The Zoo’s mission is to connect people with animals from around the globe, so what better place than PHL. This is a great partnership, and we are happy to engage passengers and provide a wonderful animal experience.”
The next monthly Zoo event at PHL is scheduled for Tuesday, November 26, 1-3 PM. It is accessible only to ticketed passengers.