Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Zoo Lights!

One of the things I enjoy most about the holiday season are all of the different, fun events which zoos host to tie in Christmas. At the Utah Hogle Zoo, they hold the annual Zoo Lights. If you haven't been before, it's a great way to get outside and enjoy the holiday season at a zoo by seeing all of the fun lights set up. Though some animals may be sleeping during this time, not all of them are! So if you're looking for a fun Christmas activity to do as a family, with a significant other, or just to get outside and enjoy your local zoo, I'd recommend checking your local zoo to see if they're hosting any type of special holiday event.

In researching what events other zoos hold around this season, I was thrilled to see that many also hold zoo lights as well as other fun events.  Here's a list of holiday events at some zoos around the U.S. Have fun!

  • Denver Zoo (Denver, CO): Zoo Lights; Santa at Zoo Lights; Kwanzaa at Zoo Lights (
*This blog is in no way associated with any zoo.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Amazing Animal Fact: Flamingos

My wife's favorite animal is the flamingo. Flamingos can only eat with their heads upside-down. Amazing! They use their tongue as a sieve to catch water and food. When was the last time you ate while upside-down? Try it.... now do it every time!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Amazing Animal Fact: Elephants

When my family goes to the zoo, one of my favorite animals is the elephant. I don't know why - maybe it's because they're massive but generally appear gentle. Anyways, one of the fascinating facts I learned about elephants while researching for my novel is that elephants can smell water up to 3 miles away. Crazy! Unless we're talking about the smell of the ocean, or the smell of a chlorinated pool, I can't even think of what water smells like. But, elephants can smell it from up to 3 miles away! Just another amazing animal fact that helps show how nature is, well ... amazing!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Amazing Animal Fact: Blue Whales

Amazing animal fact of the day: At an average of almost 100 feet long and 180 tons, a blue whale can expand its throat to consume as much as 50 tons of water in one gulp. How many gallons is that? One on of water equals about 239.65 gallons.  So 50 tons is about 11,982.5 gallons. That's about how much water the average person uses in 5 months.  All that in just one gulp by a blue whale!

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Welcome to the Amazing Animal Kingdom!

"Welcome to the Animal Kingdom, where mystery and adventure roam free!"

I'm Kyle Shoop, the author of the popular middle-grade novel Acea and the Animal Kingdom. While researching the novel and touring places to promote it, I've learned some amazing things about all type of animals. I've also been to some pretty amazing zoos and accumulated quite the mound of animal photos. (Beware, I don't hold myself out as even an amateur photographer - just the point-and-click novice.) So, I've started this blog to help share all of these things, and hopefully much more.

If you're interested in purchasing a copy of my novel, you can so either in paperback or ebook at Amazon here.  You can also read the first two chapters for free here.  If you have your own interesting animal fact or zoo experience/photo that you'd like to share on this blog, please feel free to leave it in the comments or to email me at

Hope you enjoy!