Santa Barbara Zoo Visitors Can Now Tour With A Zoo Ranger

Visitors to what is known as “one of the world’s most beautiful zoos” will have something new to enjoy amongst the 500 animals and lush botanic gardens that the Santa Barbara Zoo boasts. The zoo has just introduced Zoo Ranger™, a self-guided multimedia tour device that gives visitors a behind-the-scenes tour of the zoo that’s the closest thing to a personal tour with a zookeeper.

Zoo Ranger is a patent-pending handheld video tour guide system that delivers informative and entertaining full-color videos, audio, photography and animation based on location using the power of GPS (Global Positioning System) technology. The tour includes about 18 points of interest throughout the zoo and offers a closer look at many of the zoo’s most interesting species. Some highlights of the tour are:

* Giant Anteaters and footage of some of the 25 different baby anteaters that have been born right at the Santa Barbara Zoo!
* Chinese Alligators, the reptile equivalent of icebergs, with 90% of their bodies submerged under water most of the day, and an interesting story about how the protective mothers keep their young safe - in their mouths!
* Lemurs, the Madagascar natives who have a tendency to mark their territories and may even have a “stink fight” with other lemurs.
* The Amur Leopard, the rarest of all the big cats and now found only in a single mountain range in Southern Russia.
* Asian Elephants and how their keepers keep the naturally curious animals engaged with new scents and toys added to their yard daily.
* Humbolt Penguins, unlike their stereotypical cold-weather counterparts, are well suited to the warmer California climate as they come from a similar environment on the coast of Chile and Peru.
* The future California Trails exhibit and information about the California Condor Recovery Program in which the Santa Barbara Zoo participates with other organizations to help ensure the survival of this species.

The Zoo Ranger experience is completed with the addition of animal I.D.s, fun facts and interactive trivia where visitors can earn points by answering questions about the animals, exhibits and video segments. A dynamic zoo map shows where visitors are in relation to other points of interest and facilities.

“It’s amazing,” says Zoo CEO, Rich Block, “at predetermined GPS points in the park, Zoo Ranger automatically triggers. As you’re walking past the snow leopard exhibit – ding – the device starts up and guests can learn even more about these amazing creatures and how we care for them.”

Developed and designed by BarZ Adventures, the leading provider of hand-held GPS visitor guiding systems, Zoo Ranger utilizes innovative GPS technology to enhance the visitor experience and take it to the next level of interactivity.

“The Zoo Ranger is a fun and entertaining medium for telling fascinating stories, such as those found with the animal collections at the Santa Barbara Zoo, in a format that engages visitors from the technology generation. We feel as though all visitors will benefit with from the in-depth information that the tour presents, really connecting them with the animals and conservation programs that are unique to this zoo,” said Wm. Lee Little, Founder and CEO of BarZ Adventures Inc.

The sleek device features a four-inch LCD touch screen and can be enjoyed by several visitors at once with its dual-speaker stereo system. Zoo Ranger can be rented from the zoo’s admission window for only $9.95. Between now and October 31st, the zoo is offering a special discount to all Santa Barbara Zoo Members to try out Zoo Ranger for only $6.99.

ABOUT THE SANTA BARBARA ZOO
The Santa Barbara Zoo is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). It is open daily from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.; general admission is $11 for adults, $8 for children 2-12 and seniors 60+, and children under 2 are free. Parking is $4.

AZA zoos are dedicated to providing excellent care for animals, a great visitor experience,
and a better future for all living things.  With its more than 200 accredited members, AZA is a
leader in global wildlife conservation, and is the public’s link to helping animals in their native habitats. For more information, log onto www.sbzoo.org or call (805) 962-1673.

ABOUT BARZ ADVENTURES INC
BarZ Adventures Inc, founded in 2005, is an Austin, TX based company combining experts in the fields of computer delivery systems and content development. BarZ Adventures has designed the patent-pending Zoo Ranger™ and GPS Ranger™ systems with large venues and their visitors in mind – its sole mission is to enhance the visitor experience at high visitation locations using modern technology. Zoo Ranger tours are available at the San Francisco Zoo, Dallas Zoo, Oklahoma City Zoo and Santa Barbara Zoo. GPS Ranger tours are currently available at Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site, Cedar Breaks National Monument, Vicksburg National Military Park, Death Valley National Park, Shenandoah National Park, Independence National Historical Park, Bryce Canyon National Park and Zion National Park. Historic city walking tours are available in Key West and St. Augustine, Florida, Bermuda and Austin, Texas, which is also the first tour to be made available in American Sign Language (ASL). The first GPS Ranger College Campus tour is now available at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. For more information, log on to www.zooranger.com or call (512) 732-0135.
 



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