News / Winnipeg

Journey to Churchill fully open following repairs, wolf break-in

Zoo goers can once again enjoy the full Journey to Churchill experience at the Assiniboine Park Zoo.

Just five days after opening the new $94.4 million exhibit the zoo was forced to close the attraction’s biggest draw—the waterfall at the Churchill Coast—and the wolf enclosure for two days of repairs after the wolves broke into the polar bear’s area.

“We have a fence that subdivides the one exhibit, we have wolves on one side and the two female polar bears on the other side,” explained Assiniboine Park Conservancy COO Don Peterkin. “The wolves, being the ingenious little fellows that they are, found a spot where they could dig through that barrier and come up on the bear side.

“So they went for a visit.”

Peterkin said neither the wolves nor the bears were hurt during their time together, but the zoo had to take the animals out of the enclosures while the fence was reinforced.

While the exhibit was closed zoo officials also decided to use the opportunity to fix a small leak in the Churchill Coast’s waterfall.

Peterkin said the repairs have all been made and the exhibits are both open to the public again, although he didn’t rule out the possibility of more closures in the future.

“With an exhibit as big and complex as we’ve built there’s bound to be a few little challenges as we move forward,” he said. “Obviously we want to keep everything on display as much as we possibly can but we anticipate there’ll be a few little glitches that we’ll have to jump on as they appear.”

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