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Busch Gardens Tampa – Jungala Insider


Here's a chance to get up close and almost personal with the tigers and orangutans of Jungala. This is a 45-minute tour, and the fee is $20, a portion of which goes to the SeaWorld-Busch Gardens Conservation Fund.

The tour begins with a walk backstage to the subterranean quarters of the tigers who are not on display in the outdoor habitat. You will get to watch them being fed (blood popsicles, anyone?) in their cages while an extremely knowledgeable keeper explains the intricacies of caring for these magnificent beasts. Don’t expect any “interaction.” These are wild animals, after all, and no one at Busch Gardens touches them except when they’ve been anesthetized for veterinary.

Next, it’s off to the orangutan compound for a similar show and tell. Here the orang is behind glass and the keeper demonstrates the way the critter has been trained to respond to simple hand signals. A few of these are “tricks,” but most have to do with making veterinary procedures easier on the keepers.

Finally, you will get to meet two “Animal Ambassadors” from the bird kingdom, such as a golden conyer and a gaudily colored macaw.

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