Alberta Biodiversity Festival coming to Calgary in May

A Rocky Mountain Goat relaxed at the Calgary Zoo on Saturday, September 4, 2021. The Rocky Mountain Goats were one of the species available for visitors to view in the Canadian Wilds exhibit at the zoo. ARYN TOOMBS / FOR LIVEWIRE CALGARY

An inaugural celebration of Alberta’s flora and fauna is being brought to the city next month.

Alberta Environment and Parks and The Wilder Institute/Calgary Zoo are bringing the first ever Alberta Biodiversity Festival to the zoo and the Bow Habitat Station in May

The festival is featuring family friendly activities to teach Calgarians about nature and wildlife conservation.

“It’s so important for Albertans to not only learn about the rich biodiversity of our province but also to truly feel connected with the landscape and wildlife that surround us,” said Laura Glick, manager of conservation education at the Wilder Institute/Calgary Zoo.

“This festival is a chance for everyone to learn about the importance of biodiversity and the many challenges that wildlife in Canada face and become inspired to take action to help save these animals from extinction,” she said.

The festival runs from Friday, May 13 to Sunday, May 15. Festival activities are included in the day admission prices at the zoo, and at the Bow Habitat Station.

Art, games, and even a dance off

At the zoo, patrons will be able to take part in a “Biodiversitree” trivia game to test their knowledge of how invasive species affect Alberta. They will also be able to participate in a sage grouse inspired dance challenge, and put on a pollinator costume and trek through the zoo gardens to find pollinator-friendly plants.

Tsuut’ina Dèné artist Nathan Meguinis will be unveiling an original artwork at the zoo on May 13. And Calgary-based artist Brandie Cormier will be creating a mural throughout the festival near the penguin exhibit.

Staff at the Bow Habitat Station fish hatchery will be guiding visitors through how trout are raised from eggs to becoming stock for over 200 lakes across the province. Patrons will have an opportunity to feed the fishes, or even get a little closer through a hands-on pond dipping investigation about the invertebrate life that lives in ponds.

“We are fortunate to live in a province with unique and rich biodiversity, and we know Albertans take pride in our natural landscapes,” said Bev Yee, Deputy Minister for Alberta Environment and Parks.

“The festival will highlight stories and celebrate important conservation initiatives across the province.”

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