The Emerson Dinoroarus (dino-ROAR-us), an all-ages attraction featuring animatronic and stationary dinosaurs, opens in April at the Saint Louis Zoo. The creatures in this temporary exhibit will move realistically, some roaring and spitting, or placidly marching on lush vegetation to the delight of visitors.
The dinosaurs and other ancient species represent a vast span of geological time, and including a life-size triceratops, 12-foot-tall Tyrannosaurus rex, giant stork-like quetzalcoatlus, an 18-foot-tall Brachiosaurus, a nest of duck-billed parasaurolophus babies, and many more. The exhibit, which will be open just through October 31, also features a staged fossil dig site.
Along the tropically planted trail in this land before time, families will discover the amazing connection between dinosaurs and living animals today. They'll learn fun and interesting facts about dinosaurs and the information scientists have gained from their fossils, theories on their mass extinction, and practical ways you can help protect animals today from going extinct.
"Dinoroarus gives us a chance to talk about difficult topics like extinction and how some predecessors of dinosaurs, including turtles and crocodiles, are still with us, as well as how some descendants of dinosaurs, like birds, still grace our lives," said Michael Macek, Director of the Saint Louis Zoo.
Animatronics Meet Live Animals
Residing among the animatronic dinosaurs will be some of the Zoo's live animals, including guinea fowl, river otters, Tasmanian devils, moon jellies, sea stars, urchins, sponges, coral and anemones. Each animal has a story to tell about what they have in common with animals living in the time of dinosaurs.
"Learning about dinosaurs is kind of like 'CSI' using really old evidence," said Macek. Paleontologists ask questions about why certain dinosaurs moved to different places and why their food supplies or habitats were threatened. And those are exactly the kind of questions Zoo conservationists ask today in trying to save animals from extinction."
The Dinoroarus exhibit will be a seasonal one for the next couple of years while the Zoo works to reimagine, plan and redevelop the 3.5-acre area into a new, permanent family and children's area, which will include the Zoo's mission of connecting families and children with animals.
Admission to Dinoroarus is $5.95 per person for ages 2 and up. Free for children under 2. All guests must make a free, timed reservation in advance to enter the Zoo, as attendance is limited to help maintain social distancing. Reservations may be made up to seven days in advance. Guests age 9 and up are required to wear masks/face coverings - which must cover their nose and mouth - when visiting the Saint Louis Zoo.
For more information and reservations, go to stlzoo.org.
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