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Zoo Helping Animals Keep Cool During Heat Wave

Lincoln Park Zoo
roberts250 Bob Roberts
Bob Roberts is a native of Wilmette who has worked in Chicago media...
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CHICAGO (CBS) – At the Lincoln Park Zoo, both the animals and those who came to visit them coped with the heat wave.

The heat and humidity take a toll on the animals, the same as humans. Each copes in a different way, so staffers don’t promise that visitors will see everything they might want to see.

Visitors said they had to look a bit harder, but saw most of the animals they came to see. Polar bears made choose to lay on a block of ice, or swim in 60 degree water, while other animals have fans, or even air conditioning to help them through the heat spell.

Staff said the lions and tigers get what — to some visitors — might seem to be a grisly treat. Animal blood and other nutrients are frozen like a popsicle. In fact, some staff call them “bloodsicles.”

Zoo curator of mammals Mark Kamhout said pet owners should follow the zoo’s lead and keep them inside, in air conditioning, or around fans, and make sure they have plenty of ice chips or water.