The Creature Conservancy Hosts Animal Events and Summer Camps

If your family hasn’t yet visited The Creature Conservancy in Ann Arbor, you are in for such a treat!

Photo of snakeThe Creature Conservancy’s mission is “Conservation Through Education,” and they do this by hosting events for young people, teens and adults. Below we’ve listed some of our favorite events coming up this summer for families, as well as a bit more about this non-profit!

About The Creature Conservancy

A zoological organization that fosters appreciation and understanding of exotic animals, the Creature Conservancy houses 70 different species of animals–former exotic pets, animals from zoo or animals rescued in some other way.

The exotic pet trade is huge, with up to $42.8 billion wildlife traded annually, and only half of that is legal. The Creature Conservancy was created when its founder, Steve Marsh, rescued a pet alligator that was abandoned on the steps of a veterinary clinic.

Many people who purchase exotic pets, very “cute” as babies, are underprepared for the animal’s growth. Exotic pets are often expensive and difficult to feed and house and are often illegal in cities.

The Creature Conservancy cares for all their animals by having veterinarians carefully monitor them, give them a high-quality diet and design safe environments for them.


RELATED: 16 Ann Arbor Area Festivals You Can’t Miss This Summer

Summer camps

Summer camps run Monday-Friday, 9am-4pm, $360/wk (July 4th week is $215).

Grades 1-2:
“Zoo Explorer” June 17-21, July 15-19 and August 12-19.
Your child will create animal enrichment opportunities, ready animal meals, and more in this camp for aspiring zookepers.

“Pokemon Pals” June 24-29, July 22-26.
Your child will learn the similarities between Pokemons and The Creature Conservancy reptiles, mammals, and more–they’ll make crafts, play games, and earn Pokemon cards as they improve their animal classification skillset.

“Sensational Animals” August 5-9, August 19-23.
Your child will explore unusual facts about animals’ senses and use their own senses to explore how they are similar or different from reptiles, amphibians, and more.

Grades 3-4:

“Zoofari Camp” June 17-21, July 22-26.
Put on your child’s comfy shoes so they can learn about the coexistence of animals and humans and learn how find ways to coexist and assist in wildlife conservation, both in our backyards and around the world.

“Operation Zoo” July 15-19, August 5-9.
Learning about the Five Freedoms for zookeepers, your child will enjoy animal presentations while creating a zoo animal habitat and learning about animal enrichment and survival.

“Wonderful World of Animals” July 8-12, July 29-Aug 2, August 19-23.
Every day your child will explore a different continent and all its unique animals, many featured at the Conservancy. With crafts and games, your child will “travel” around the world to learn about rainforests and grasslands and all the animals inbetween.

Grades 5-6:

“Zoo Heroes” June 24-29, August 12-16.
Which Conservancy animal can jump eighteen feet high? Which one can see a mile away? Through animal presentations and visits, your child will learn about animals’ defense mechanisms and superpowers.

“Wild Adventures” July 29-August 2.
Your child will learn about habitats, conservation, and explore outdoors–through hikes, stream exploration, and plant/insect collection. Perfect for the outdoorsy active child.

Grades 7-9:
“Zoo Squad” July 8-12.
What’s in a zookeeper’s daily life? How do they feed animals, care for their habitats, enrich their minds, and give them medical support? Your preteen will learn all these skills to be an empowered pet owner or future zookeeper.

Grades 10-12:
“Zoo Club”– July 1-3.
In a zoo-like environment, your teen will prepare special animal diets, safely feed animals, learn how to assess an animal’s health, and design enrichment opportunities for the animals under their care.

A special event for teens:
“Reptile Encounters” June 15th, 7-9pm, 13+, $25/each.
Meet a reticulated python (the world’s longest snake), a Cuban crocodile, a false water cobra, leopard tortoise, and more! A wide assortment of reptiles will be displayed for your education and enjoyment. Reptiles are so cool and your teens will definitely think so after this event.

And adults, here’s an event for you too!
Art and Animals” –June 22nd, 7-10pm. 21+, $40.

At this workshop, you’ll meet the resident woodchuck Nigel, and then under the guidance of a local artist, you’ll paint a woodchuck (all supplies included).

Which of these events piques your interest? Let us know in the comments!

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