Anywhere to see tropical birds in New York City Area?
January 3, 2013 10:21 AM   Subscribe

My 10-year-old nephew lives in Cranford, NJ and really likes tropical birds. My wife and I said for Christmas we'd take him to the zoo hopefully to see some birds and really the only research I had done was to confirm the Prospect Park Zoo (which is the same thing as the Brooklyn Zoo??) was open in the winter, but when I look at the site there's not much mention of tropical birds. Is there anything better in the area?
posted by theNeutral to Society & Culture (13 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
The Central Park Zoo's rain forest exhibit is awesome. Lots of brightly-colored tropical birds up close and personal.
posted by lalex at 10:29 AM on January 3, 2013 [2 favorites]


Brooklyn Zoo/Prospect Park Zoo are basically the same thing, yeah. And no, there isn't much there in the way of tropical birds.

Seconding the Central Park Zoo, though - the Bronx Zoo also has rather a few.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 10:31 AM on January 3, 2013


Thirding Central Park Zoo -- the nature of the exhibit is such that the birds are RIGHT THERE NEXT TO YOU OMG!!!! Not even in a cage! Just right there next to you on a branch or a railing or even on a bench made for people! WOWEE! My kid loved it. (And so did I!)
posted by BlahLaLa at 10:34 AM on January 3, 2013


I'm not sure what's near you, but ever aquarium I have ever been to has had a tropical bird exhibit - often ones you can feed - and they tend to be warm inside places, so you might check those as well.
posted by dpx.mfx at 10:40 AM on January 3, 2013


The Bronx Zoo is probably a better bet.
posted by larthegreat at 10:55 AM on January 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


Nthing the Central Park Zoo. Afterwards (a bit of a hike, but easy in a cab or couple buses), Fauna is a great shop on the UWS that has an amazing collection of not-for-sale tropical birds along with parrots and other smaller birds on display.
posted by Mchelly at 10:57 AM on January 3, 2013


The Bronx Zoo is really good. And while your experience may vary the indoor jungle world and bird houses are nice to visit in the winter and at times the birds can get pretty up close and personal.
posted by Captain_Science at 10:58 AM on January 3, 2013


Queens Zoo aviary is open year-round.
posted by griphus at 10:59 AM on January 3, 2013


Parrots of the World is an increadable store. Last time I was there they had about a hundred birds, most in wire cages or out on a perch.
posted by Sophont at 11:19 AM on January 3, 2013


The birds in the Central Park Zoo aviary just do not give a fuck and will interact with people whenever they feel like it. They are the most New York of birds.

If your grandson ever gets out to Pittsburgh, I highly recommend the National Aviary there. It's a beautiful facility, and the birds there are even chummier than at Central Park. Some kind of puffy gray swan thing from South America fell in love with me and kept wriggling around my ankles like a cat. It was wild.
posted by Sidhedevil at 12:07 PM on January 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


Ooh, just realized that if you want to go south instead of north, the Philadelphia Zoo may work; they also have an aviary, including a little room where you can feed lorikeets!*

* "Feeding" them consists of "get handed a tiny paper cup of some sort of juice/fruit smoothie substance and then step into an enclosure, at which point about twelve birds will instantly swoop down upon you and stand on your head and shoulders and arms while the closest one to your hand guzzles it down in two seconds, and then they all fly away over to the next person." But for a kid it'd be way cool.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 12:26 PM on January 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


If you go to Brooklyn, then you simply must go to Greenwood Cemetery. Why? Well, it is there that the wild parrots of Brooklyn live.
posted by minervous at 1:07 PM on January 3, 2013


Wow, you guys are amazin'.... Thanks for all the great info!
posted by theNeutral at 3:22 PM on January 3, 2013


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