For the animals at the Montreal Ecomuseum, it's business as usual. The zoo in Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue, the only one of its kind on the Island of Montreal, is posting regular updates on its social media pages, showing what its critters are up to while the gates are closed to the public. The photos and videos of animals blissfully unaware of the circumstances that surround them are a welcome escape from the dreary stream of bad news.
The Ecomuseum first closed on March 16 in response to public health recommendations.
It reduced its staff, but the well-being of its animals has remained a top priority, Director General David Rodrigue assured in an April 9 Facebook video.
"Care is still there, so don't worry," he told viewers.
"We will never reduce either the care or well-being of the animals who are our responsibility," he promised.
In a video published on April 17, Chief Veterinarian Dr. Sarah Annie Guenette further explained that the animals are under surveillance by medical staff to ensure their health.
Luckily for Montrealers, personnel are still able to capture some pretty cute images.
"While some of the animals seem to miss the presence of visitors, others seem to be enjoying this calm period," museum Director of Communications, Émilie Sénécal, told MTL Blog.
"They all have their own personality!"
The situation has nonetheless presented financial difficulties for the non-profit organization.
Would-be visitors who want to help out can make a donation through Canada Helps or sign up for the Animal Sponsorship Program, where, according to the museum website, "every dollar received contributes directly to the cost of long-term care of the animals in our care."
The Ecomuseum is dedicated to "environmental education, wildlife conservation, and animal well-being."
The creatures in its care "were orphaned, rehabilitated or born under professional human care" and reside in spaces that represent "faithful replications" of their natural environments.
Stay tuned for more news.