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Cheryl Dykstra

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A 25-year veteran of animal care at JBZ, Cheryl started working as a seasonal in Red's Hobby Farm and worked her way up to managing the bird and fish collection at the zoo.  On any given day, you might find Cheryl at her desk finalizing paperwork for an animal tranfer or out in the zoo helping animal care staff ready an exhibit for animals.  Cheryl has had a hand in helping raise over forty penguin chicks in her zoo career.  

Posts by Cheryl Dykstra


Have you ever wondered where our cownose rays and white-spotted bamboo shark go when the weather gets cold?

Well they migrate to their winter holding pool. We catch them from the lagoon and transport them to a tank inside a building. Here, they have a slightly larger pool that is protected from the elements. We care for them in the same manner as when they are in the lagoon, only without the public feedings.


Flamingo Breeding Update

Have you been wondering about the incubation of our flamingo eggs? Well it’s been a really busy summer! We went from two pairs to six known pairs with eggs and several eggs with unknown parentage (none of the birds would take responsibility for them when questioned…).  

CHILEAN FLAMINGO: A John Ball Zoo Achievement !

The animal care staff is very excited this summer. We recently had two of our Chilean Flamingos lay eggs. Now you might wonder why we are so excited. We have had flamingos in the South American exhibit since 1984 when we populated it with7 birds. Over the years, we have added birds trying to build our flock and as we lost them due to various medical reasons.