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If you thought Spring Training was over, guess again! It’s still underway at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium. The animals and keepers at the Wild Wonders Outdoor Theater are preparing for their popular summer show, “Extraordinary Creatures and How to Care for Them.” The show returns May 4 and runs daily at 11:30 a.m. Beginning June 17th, the show will run daily at both 11:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m.

Wild Wonders Outdoor Theater keepers are working with the animals on jumping, flying, running and other athletic behaviors. Throughout the show, staff explain the animals’ behaviors and teach about positive-reinforcement training. Training the animals allows the keepers and veterinary team to easily give them wellness exams when needed, and ensures they live healthy, stimulating lives.

During the show, the live audience meets a wizard who cares for mythical creatures with a magical staff. The keepers teach the wizard how they train animals to participate in their own health care and how to provide daily enrichment to encourage natural behaviors. With the help from the keepers and the wizard’s mentor, Professor Dumbledog, she has a realization about the importance of caring for animals.

“Training is always positive and collaborative, and the animals have the option to participate,” said Wild Wonders Theater Curator Lacey. “It’s all about offering choices to our animals.”

Rocket also known as Professor Dumbledog

Rocket, the superstar dog, plays “Professor Dumbledog” in the action-packed show.

“Dogs are highly intelligent animals and need a lot of attention and exercise,” said Lacey. “Keepers train Rocket multiple times a day, and he gets lots of walks throughout the zoo.”

Tilli the Aardvark

During the show, guests will see Tilli the aardvark walk across the stage, dig in her sandbox, and slurp up a mouthful of treats to show off her 12-inch-long sticky tongue. There are only about 30 aardvarks in zoos across the United States, so meeting Tilli is a unique experience.

Walnut the Beaver

During the show, guests will see Walnut, the beaver, enjoy a dip in his private pool and eat an apple as a treat.

“Beavers in the wild swim all the time, so Walnut and his beaver family have their very own swimming pool!” said Lacey.

Clark the King Vulture

During the show, Clark, the king vulture, will soar and swoop overhead from perch to perch. Make sure to look alive as he flies overhead as vultures usually only like to eat dead things. 

Meet all of the animals at the Wild Wonders Outdoor Theater here.