A brand new 400 seat amphitheater has officially opened at the Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium.
The Dick and Mary Holland Meadowlark Theater spotlights 15 bird species that will perform during three 20 minute shows each day. During the shows the birds will fly into audience from all different directions.
In the case of the guinea fowl, they will run through the crowd while collecting rewards from trainers.
There are a number of perches in the seating area, but no net overhead. The birds could easily escape but are trained to not fly away.
Mandi Krebs is the zoo’s interactive animal programs manager. She says having the birds up close to people will help them better educate visitors about conservation and the natural history of each bird.
The amphitheater is located just inside the zoo’s north entrance. It’s named for the state bird.
Tickets for shows are $3 for zoo members and $4 for nonmembers.