LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - When the weather drops below freezing, people prepare their home and bodies for the frigid weather. The animals at the Ellen Trout Zoo in Lufkin are no different.
According to the zoo's general curator Celia Falzone, they have been prepared since August for potential freezing weather, making sure they have everything they need to ensure that each species can adapt.
"Part of our selection process is looking at what animals are suitable for our climate," said Falzone. "We don't have a lot of animals that are really delicate that couldn't deal with cold weather, but that doesn't mean they don't need some help.
The zoo prepared each species' habitat according to what they needed to survive the freeze. Some of the materials added to the habitats were hay beds, hat lamps, hog mats, and wind breaks that helped alleviate freezing temperatures. Fountains were left on to have water continuously moving in order for it not freeze.
Still, there were some animals that needed to be put inside a heated building. Giraffes, rhinos, and certain types of birds thrived better in indoor conditions.
"I just want people to understand that if we have animals inside, it's for their welfare," said Falzone. "They'll be out as soon as it gets a little warmer."