Inspiration Meets Innovation | Summer 2011


Animal Inspiration Becomes Attraction's Innovation

The cheetah is the fastest land animal in the world. Busch Gardens®Tampa’s animal experts and ride engineers have drawn inspiration from this beautiful animal to create the park’s two newest attractions. Cheetah Hunt is a new coaster that launches riders from 0 to 60 (the top speed of the cheetah) in a matter of seconds. Cheetah Run is an expansive new habitat where visitors can see these animals up close and learn about the park’s conservation work. Read more.


Cheetah's Best Friend

After Busch Gardens Tampa took in Kasi, a male cheetah cub neglected by its mother, the park’s animal care team found the perfect four-legged friend for the young cat: a female Labrador puppy named Mtani. It is becoming common in the zoological community for a single cheetah to be raised with a canine companion due to the male cheetah’s social nature. The duo will help the park’s education team teach the public about the plight of cheetahs in the wild -- there may be less than 12,000 left -- and the importance of Busch Gardens’ conservation efforts. Read more.


For the Sake of Turtles

Recently SeaWorld® San Diego said goodbye to plastic bags, a major threat to sea turtles, and opened “Turtle Reef,” a new attraction that increases awareness about the dangers faced by threatened and endangered sea turtles. SeaWorld San Diego gift shops now offer only paper and reusable sacks. This move will save more than 1 million plastic bags, which turtles can mistake for food. “Turtle Reef” showcases more than 60 sea turtles in a 300,000-gallon aquarium with a massive underwater viewing gallery. 
Read more.


Turtle: The Incredible Journey

This summer follow the life and migration of a loggerhead turtle from hatchling to maturity in “Turtle: The Incredible Journey.” Narrated by Academy Award nominee Miranda Richardson, the film is the first release of the newly formed SeaWorld Pictures. The 3-D film follows a loggerhead turtle, a threatened species, on a 9,000-mile migration and shares the fragility and beauty of the oceans with movie-goers. The film is currently playing in select markets and rolls out across the country over the course of the summer. Read more.


Granting $1 Million to Help Wildlife in Need

Wildlife around the world will benefit from $1 million in grants awarded by the SeaWorld & Busch Gardens Conservation Fund. More than 100 wildlife protection projects were chosen. The projects include programs to reintroduce endangered cheetahs to the African wild, protect sea turtle nests across the world, preserve penguin species, educate and connect kids with the ocean, and restore America’s fragile coasts. Since its creation eight years ago, the Fund has granted more than $8 million to protect animals in need and endangered species around the world. Read more.


SeaWorld "Pilots" a Whale Rescue

Last month the SeaWorld Rescue Team moved into action to provide guidance, expertise and manpower to help rescue and care for a large group of pilot whales that had beached just north of Key West, Fla. After days of round-the-clock care the team, working alongside other wildlife rescue organizations, two of the surviving whales were fitted with tracking devices and returned to the open ocean (visit the tracking website here). SeaWorld’s veterinary and animal care staff continues to provide resources and on-site support for marine mammal professionals and volunteers attending to the surviving whales that remain at the Marine Mammal Conservancy in Key Largo, Fla. 
Read more.