Jacksonville Zoo draws large crowd wanting to study animals during eclipse

Officials and children at the Jacksonville Zoo had a chance to look at the effects of the solar eclipse on animals there.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A hot spot for viewing and studying the effect from Monday’s eclipse was at Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens.

Little is known about how animals react to solar eclipses or if they experience any kind of impact, so local animal behavioral experts went around to the zoo exhibits throughout the day to look for any kind of noticeable changes.

The zoo invited the public to join in on the fun and help contribute to their data collection. It asked for any observations, videos or pictures taken on Monday that could show animal behaviors.

Aiden Smith, 7, came to the zoo with his mom in place of going to school. He took diligent notes and pictures of different animals.

“I’ve never seen this before,” Smith said. “In my whole life! I know the moon covers the sun so it gets dark, it should be dark right now.”

Valerie Segura is the Applied Animal Behavior Analyst for the zoo. She said they didn’t notice any major changes since we didn’t have a total eclipse on the First Coast, but they will be going over the collection of notes in the coming days.

She said she is looking forward to the data and videos collected by all the families and students who came out to help on Monday.

© 2017 WTLV-TV


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