Animal Intelligence

Jack Hanna got busted in college in the late 1960s for keeping ducks in his dorm. It was clear that he needed a preserve. So after he graduated, he opened a petting zoo on his father’s farm in Ohio. Several years later he took the helm at the Columbus Zoo, which was in terrible shape. “Jungle Jack” is credited with revitalizing the zoo, in part by moving from smaller caged enclosures to full environmental areas tailored to each species. The project also led to a dramatic increase in attendance and funding. After being a favorite on late-night talk shows over the years and getting his own cable show, Hanna continues to make news. Last year authorities in Zanesville, Ohio, sought his help in recovering exotic animals after their owner turned them loose and committed suicide at his farm. He appears today at Zootellectuals: A Day with Jack Hanna, a fundraiser for the San Francisco Zoo. Hanna films an episode of The Jack Hanna Show; later engagements include hors d’oeuvres, dinner, and an opportunity to meet Hanna and some of his guests — who happen to live at the zoo. No word on whether ducks will be present.
Sun., Feb. 12, 1:30 p.m., 2012

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