PHOTOS: ZooMiami animals’ treats get holiday season twist

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Ron Magill, Zoo Miami

‘Tis the season and during these challenging times, it’s not just people that need to have some holiday cheer, the animals at Zoo Miami also love to receive special “gifts” to celebrate this time of year.

MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, Fla. – Ron Magill wants everyone to know the holiday season is in full swing at ZooMiami this year.

Zookeepers recently used gift wrapping paper and Santa Claus-style decorations to make some regular treats more festive.

Here is what Magill reported on Monday:

The zookeepers gave Hank, a sloth bear, a gift wrapped box with mealworms. (ZooMiami)

The zookeepers gave Hank, a sloth bear, a gift box with mealworms.

Dalip and Nellie, two of ZooMiami's Asian elephants, found treats hanging like Christmas tree ornaments. (ZooMiami)

They hung cantaloupes and apples as ornaments on a tree for Dalip and Nellie, the zoo’s adult Asian elephants. They also used peanut butter, sugar-free gelatin, fruits and vegetables to decorate a frozen snowman for Ongard, a younger elephant.

Reina and Adonia, two jaguars living in ZooMiami, found icy treats, disguised as holiday candy. (ZooMiami)

Zookeepers froze blood from meat into blocks for Reina and Adonia, two jaguars. They gave banana pieces to Banyon, a tree kangaroo, and they spent a long time decorating the habitat of the zoo’s troop of Chimpanzees.

Zookeepers said the chimpanzees seemed to have the most fun with the new treats and gifts. (ZooMiami)

Bubbles, Samantha, Niger and Hondo found gift boxes and tubes with fruits and vegetables. The zookeepers also gave them containers with diluted vanilla and chocolate Ensure. There were also bottles with red Gatorade.

About the Author:

The Emmy Award-winning journalist joined the Local 10 News team in 2013. She wrote for the Miami Herald for more than 9 years and won a Green Eyeshade Award.