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The Dally Tar Hel
Tuesday, Feb. 18, 1975
east on norsemea
by Andy Sidden
Roraar has a hearty appetite. He eats a dozen apples, a dozen
oranges, a quart of green beans, eight slices of bread, eight ounces of
stewed beef and half a pineapple each day.
Romar, a 235-pound gorilla, is one of more than 1 00 animals fed
and cared for at the North Carolina Zoological Park under
construction near Asheboro.
Along with his food, Romar is supposed to have a quart of milk
"It's sometimes hard to get that much in him," zookeeper John
Freeze, a 74 UNC graduate, said. He usually gets about a pint along
with some orange juice."
Freeze said most of the animals are vegetarians and their food can
usually be bought in local grocery stores.
"It's sometimes hard to get pineapples, though, in a small town like
Asheboro," he said.
Feeding the carnivorous animals presents more of a problem.
Many of them eat horsemeat, while the zoo's seven boa constrictprs
lunch on dead mice. Few grocery stores in Asheboro or elsewhere
stock these items.
"The snakes are probably my favorites of all the animals," Freeze
said. Tve got a pet boa of my own at home. I feed him dead hamsters
instead of mice."
It cost $20,000 to feed the animals this year. Zoo Operations
Manager A.H. Lueker estimates it will cost $35,000 next year. The
state pays the cost of operation; the North Carolina Zoological
are watching the
Society hopes to raise the money for the 20-year construction
program. . . -.
Dippy, a white-handed gibbon (a small Asian ape), works to cut
food costs by gathering some of his own food. He searches for little
delicacies such as dandruff and lint from the zoo keepers' hair.
Sometimes he gets a little rough-
"Dippy grabbed my hair through the peep-hole behind his cage the
other day and banged my head against the wall," said zookeeper
John Byrd, a former chemistry teacher. It was all I could do to get
Byrd has been trampled by an antelope, charged by a pregnant
bison and bitten by a wide assortment of animals at the zoo.
"It's times like those when I wish I was back teaching school," he
said. I really love all the animals, though."
Only seven keepers work at the zoo now, but by the time it's
completed it will employ several hundred.
The park, the first state-supported zoo in the country, has the
potential to become the largest walk-through zoological park in the
world. Its master plan calls for 1,37 1 acres divided into sections:
South and North America, South and East Africa, Australia,
Europe, Asia, "World of Seas" and North Carolina.
The zoo will be built in phases, Freeze said. Phase One, the African
sections, should be finished in two or three years. The zoological
society hopes to raise $ 1 3.4 million for this phase. It will take 20 to 25
years to complete the zoo.
Romar, the gorilla, will live in the African section and will require
one of the many special structures planned to protect animals that
can't thrive in North Carolina's climate. Temperature, humidity and
light in these buildings will be the same as in the animals' natural
habitats. Zoo visitors will be able to go from sub-freezing arctic areas
to scorching deserts.
Zoo Director Bill Huff said last summer that entering the
structures would be similar to entering different climate zones with
Animals not needing climate control will stay in open areas
representing their own natural habitats, separated from other habitat
areas by moats, ridge lines or patches of forest.
Romar and Dippy, the gibbon, now live in the large animal display
building at the interim zoo along with" about 30 other animals.
Animals not housed in this building live outdoors in oblong cages,
called runs, or in fenced in pastures.
The zoo is open to the public from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day and
admission is. free.
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Zookeeper John Freeze feeds giraffe at the new North Carolina Zoological Park near Asheboro
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Some inner cities have special schools, roi
little boys who don't talk.
Not mute little boys. But children so withdrawn
so afraid of failure, they cannot make the slightest
attempt to do anything at which they might fail.
Some don't talk. Some don't listen. Most don't
behave. And all of them don't learn.
One day someone asked us to help.
Kodak responded by working with the teachers.
Showed them how, through the language of pictures,
the children could communicate as they never could
before. And the teachers sent the kids out to take
pictures with their cameras.
And then the miracle. Little boys who had never
said anything, looked at the pictures and began to
talk. They said "This Is my house." "This is my dog."
"This is where I like to hide." They began to explain,
to describe, to communicate. And once the chan
nels of commumcation had been opened, they
began to learn. -
What does Kodak stand to gain from this? Well,
we're showing how our products can help a teacher
and maybe creating a whole new market. And
we're also cultivating young customers who will
someday buy their own cameras and film. But more
than that, we're cultivating alert, educated citizens.
Who will someday be responsible for our society.
After all, our business depends on society. So
we care what happens to it.
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