Most people realize that it takes a lot of humans behind the scenes to keep Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium in tip-top form, which is one of the reasons the Director’s Award was established – to honor zoo staff who completed projects in 2016 that had a notable positive impact on zoo operations and/or the guest experience; or showed significant costs savings or added tangible value to a process or park operation or animal husbandry in general.
There’s no question that coral is beautiful, and that we’re all mesmerized by the stunning coral reef exhibits in The Suzanne and Walter Scott Aquarium, but what does it have to do with us in landlocked Nebraska?
“I have two boys, one who just finished first grade and one going into kindergarten. Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium is something that we do outside that is active, and I don’t risk blowing a hamstring,” says Trevor Schade, a single father who shares custody of his sons.
“We wanted to do something that was significant for Omaha, but also significant nationally and internationally,” says Dr. Lee G. Simmons (“Doc”), former director of Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium and current chairman of the Omaha Zoo Foundation, of the plan to put a jungle in the middle of the heartland.
The vaquita marina porpoise is the most critically endangered cetacean in the world. In November 2016, it was believed there were only 30 vaquitas left, down from 60 in 2015. Then, last month, three more vaquitas were found dead in illegal gillnets.