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Finally, a zoo opening in Valladolid

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A huge ranch has been transformed into a lovely zoo for Valladolid.
A huge ranch has been transformed into a lovely zoo for Valladolid.

Valladolid, Yucatán — Two years ago, German-born entrepreneur Paul Gotthold Beutelspache was leading a private tour of a zoo he was developing on his private ranch.

A 10-year-old pointed and asked what one of the animals was. It was a duck. How could a child of that age not know ducks? The point was made. VallaZoo’s educational mission is filling a void.

The culmination of many years of work is paying off, with a free teaching zoo soon to be open to the public.

Beutelspache has been transforming his 36-acre ranch Blanca Flor into parkland with 100 species of native animals, 50 exotic plants, and three man-made lakes. It is due to open to the public sometime in the  middle of the year.

For now, invited guests have been seeing much progress. Visitors first encounter a community of green and striped iguanas in a large farm that reflects their natural habitat. Then there are tepezcuintles, turkeys, goats, rabbits, cows, donkeys, ducks, wild boars, bald pig and several birds of the region. A herd of docile, white-tail deer mingle with pheasants.

Workers are working on a reforestation of jabín, cedar, ramon, flamboyanes among others trees.

The new zoo at Valladolid has a crocodile farm.
The new zoo at Valladolid has a crocodile farm.

But perhaps the main attraction is the crocodile breeding farm in one of the three artificial lakes. Eight adult crocodiles feed on carp.

A future phase of development will bring in spider monkeys, coyotes and a pair of jaguars.

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