News Release
Contact: Sondra Katzen, Public Relations, 708.688.8351,
October 17, 2023

Note: Scroll to end of press release to download photos.

Animals at Brookfield Zoo Enjoy Pumpkins for Enrichment

Brookfield, Ill. — This week, several animals at Brookfield Zoo received Halloween treats—pumpkins—for enrichment. Banana, a 4-year-old pygmy hippopotamus, chomped on her pumpkin to get to the gooey pulp and seeds. Sophia and Heidi, two of the Zoo’s orangutans smashed their pumpkins to enjoy their nutrient-rich treat. And, Sheba, a binturong; Fisher, one of the grey seals; the Galapagos tortoises, and the Rodrigues fruit bats also seemed to like their seasonal gourds.

Guests can see additional animals receiving pumpkins during the final weekend of Boo! at the Zoo on October 21 and 22 at 10:30 a.m. Axhi, a brown bear; and Hudson, one of the Zoo’s polar bears will receive pumpkins on Saturday and the western lowland gorillas on Sunday. Additional activities during the Halloween celebration include sweet treats for guests, pumpkin decorating, magic show, memorable photo opportunities, and Zoo Chats about not-so-creepy critters.
The animal care specialists are always thinking of ways to physically and mentally stimulate the animals at Brookfield Zoo. One way is by providing them with enrichment items they normally do not receive on a regular basis.

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Photo Captions (credit: Jim Schulz/CZS-Brookfield Zoo)
35, 56, 60, and 84: Banana, a 4-year-old pygmy hippopotamus at Brookfield Zoo, seemed to enjoy the pumpkin she received for enrichment.
0167: Sophia, an orangutan at Brookfield Zoo, takes a bite out of a pumpkin to work her way to get to the gooey pulp and seeds.
0189: Heidi, an orangutan at Brookfield Zoo, looks inquisitively at the stringy insides of a pumpkin before eating it.
0414: Sheba, one of Brookfield Zoo’s binturong, received a carved out pumpkin for enrichment from the animal care staff.
9103: Fisher, a grey seal at Brookfield Zoo, played with a pumpkin he received for enrichment from the animal care staff.
9976 and 9988: Brookfield Zoo’s Galapagos tortoises, seemed to enjoy their Halloween treat that featured a carving of a capybara.


About the Chicago Zoological Society
The mission of the Chicago Zoological Society is to inspire conservation leadership by connecting people to wildlife and nature. The Chicago Zoological Society is a private nonprofit organization that operates Brookfield Zoo on land owned by the Forest Preserves of Cook County. The Society is known throughout the world for its international role in animal population management and wildlife conservation. Brookfield Zoo is the first zoo in the world to be awarded the Humane Certified™ certification mark for the care and welfare of its animals, meeting American Humane Association’s rigorous certification standards. The Zoo is located at 8400 31st Street in Brookfield, Illinois, between the Stevenson (I-55) and Eisenhower (I-290) expressways and also is accessible via the Tri-State Tollway (I-294), Metra commuter line, and CTA and PACE bus service. For further information, visit