A pair of animals is being used as experimental models in a new experiment at the California Zoo in Sacramento.
“The goal of the experiment is to evaluate and evaluate the long-term effects of changes in the diet and behavioral responses to changes in climate,” said California Zoo spokeswoman Jill Luebke.
While the experiment has only been open to the public since March, Luecke says the public is welcome to participate and “do what they can to help.”
The zoo is one of more than a dozen zoos across the country looking at how climate change will impact animals.
The project was launched with a $200,000 grant from the National Science Foundation and is expected to last through 2019.
“Our hope is to identify whether or not these animals can be rehabilitated if they are relocated,” Luehke said.
In the experiment, five of the animals will be housed in a climate-controlled tank, with the other three being housed in “freezing temperatures.”
One of the models will be released to the general public in November 2019.
The other will be on display in February 2020.
Follow me on Twitter: @jeff_snyder