DALLAS -- The animals are the stars. The energetic -- or lazy -- headliners draw the visitors, but they aren't the ones who make the Dallas Zoo the ultimate reality show!
"It's a beautiful feeling when you see the guests really enjoy something that you put your heart into," Dallas Zoo water features supervisor Ruben Pacheco said. "We do our best to make this place shine."
The maintenance men make it all move, and they were put to the test recently.
"We had a water leak here in front of the mandrills feeding the penguins," Dallas Zoo plumber NauZares Halle said. "The water just kept leaking out into the walkway, so then it became a hazard."
The running water really was a hazard for Zoo goers, but if that water main leak became a water main break? It would've meant much bigger problems.
"Lots of these animals are in water most of their lives," Pacheco said. "Without this water, they're in danger."
Now, it's not like the tanks themselves would empty, but they'd get dirty quickly. Keepers would have no way to clean them, they couldn't put fresh water in, and the filters couldn't do their jobs.
So four guys got to work for our furry and feathered friends.
"Concrete got tore out, dug up maybe a 12-foot hole, and fixed the leak," Pacheco said.
Sounds easy, right?
"We looked up, it was midnight and still had a lot of work to do," Halle said. "Next thing you know, it was three o`clock in the morning, and we still had a lot of work to do. In total, we worked almost 28 hours."
28 hours for the penguins. 28 hours for the public.
"We look nice and clean right now," Pacheco laughed, looking down at their fresh shirts, "but that night we were messy."
Excellence behind the scenes means everything to the Zoo crew.
It's about time we celebrate that!