An ocean park in Wuhan, China, has come up with an original way to learn more about animals and makes a small profit in the process. For a fee of about $145, visitors can learn more about animals by cleaning their pens and preparing their feed.
The Wuhan Haichang Ocean Park recently made international headlines for a pretty bizarre service. In an effort to get people more interested in animals, it is allowing people to pay for the chance to get closer to them, scoop up their droppings, prepare their food and feed them. The offer is available only once a week, and applications and reservations have to be made a week in advance. It’s not free, though. People have to pay 998 yuan ($145) for the three-hour experience.
Photo: Arturo de Frias Marques
“It’s the first time the park has had a program targeting adults,” park spokesperson Chen Ting said. “It is a pilot to popularize science and knowledge of the animal for the public good, not for money. We actually don’t want too many participants as that would disturb them.”
The service was launched on April 1st, so it’s no wonder that a lot of people originally believed that charging people a lot of money to scoop polar bear scoop was a good April Fools prank. But it’s no joke, and people are actually lining up to take advantage of the unique opportunity, especially since it offers great selfie material.
“It really costs money to smell poop, but it’s quite funny. I’ve never imagined such close contact with these rarely-met polar bears. My selfie with them just got over 60 likes on Wechat, and I’ve learnt a lot about polar bear care. It’s good,” said Li, a man in his 20s who got to take part in the experience.
Before going to work, visitors first undergo a short health checkup, receive information about how to interact with the animals and are provided with rubber boots and a poop scooper.