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NEW YORK, NY, September 03, 2013 /24-7PressRelease/ -- It is common these days to turn on the news and hear a story about homeowners encountering coyotes in their yard or even a bear that has made his way into the kitchen. Incidents like these used to be considered anomalies, but lately they seem more and more like the norm. As we humans build and expand our world, we increasingly encroach upon the natural habitats of North American wildlife and the result is more stories of coyotes terrorizing pet owners and raccoons raiding the trash.
Encounters between humans and wild animals are commonplace and more often than not, unpleasant. Animal Miracle Network hopes that educating the human population will help the wildlife population survive. A privately funded organization founded by pet lifestyle expert Colleen Paige, the organization established National Wildlife Day on September 4th 2006.
According to Animal Miracle Network's website, the holiday is in memory of conservationist Steve Irwin for "all he taught about the amazing animals we share this planet with."
The holiday draws attention to the endangered animals around us and celebrates the zoos that preserve our wildlife and educate the public.
One place doing its share of protecting wildlife is the Garold Wayne Interactive Zoological Park in Wynnewood, Oklahoma. This year on September 4th the park will observe the annual holiday by opening its doors to the public for free. "Anyone can come learn about wildlife," says Park Entertainer Joe Schreibvogel, also known as Joe Exotic.
Exotic hopes that the free admission will be an incentive for those who might not otherwise venture in and an opportunity for others who normally could not afford to. For Exotic more visitors means more opportunities to introduce people to wildlife in a safe environment and appreciate the importance of conservation. "Our whole goal is educating people about animals in the wild," Exotic says. "If we want to see wildlife on our planet in the next 100 years, we have to learn to respect their natural habitats."
The Garold Wayne Interactive Zoological Park, founded in 1997 by Francis and Shirley Schreibvogel, houses over 1,400 animals. "We try to keep a variety of animals for visitors to see and learn about," the park's website says. Tour guides lead groups around the park's 54 acres where visitors can learn about the 128 difference species and their habitats, and get close-up to the animals and interact with them.
According to Exotic people often "touch them, hold them, and fall in love with them." By holding, and falling in love with a baby raccoon visitors can come to understand and appreciate the animals that so often seem like nothing more than a pest or a menace; holding a baby bear may make the grown one in the yard less terrifying. This is what Exotic hopes to inspire more peaceful cohabitation. As he explains it, "You can't learn to love and respect something you've never been around."
For more information on how you can help visit Zoo Relief at http://www.zoorelief.com
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