Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Which Cleveland Zoo critter is most expensive epicurean?

If you were asked which is the most expensive animal species to feed at the Cleveland Zoo, chances are you’d say elephant, lions or some other large critter.

And you’d be wrong.

The most expensive (certainly ONE of the most expensive) are the zoo’s koala bears from Australia.

Cleveland Metroparks’ three park commissioners are expected to approve on Thursday a bid for $105,000 for eucalyptus browse for the zoo’s koalas.

Then again, the commissioners have no choice. That is because there is just a single source for the vegetation which the koalas feed on exclusively.

Complicating matters is that the forage must be air shipped in every two days from just one supplier, the eucalyptus being grown only in Arizona and Florida, Cleveland Metroparks officials say.

- Jeffrey L. Frischkorn


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