Supplying Flake Ice to Zoos and Aquariums

Howe is proud to announce that we are now a commercial member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), a global organization committed to providing excellent care for thousands of species. Flake ice helps zoos and aquariums provide an ideal environment for cold weather animals. This may seem like an unlikely application for flake ice machines, but in reality, a number of wildlife parks today use them to produce huge quantities of ice.

Multiple zoos and aquariums rely on ice flake machines to cool penguin enclosures. The Helzberg Penguin Plaza at the Kansas City Zoo is one such example. The plaza, which opened in October 2013, makes 8,000 pounds of ice every day using two 4,000 pound capacity Howe flake ice machines. According to the Kansas City Zoo, the old ice is removed and replaced with new ice at the end of every day. The sheer amount of flake ice produced is enough to coat the exhibit with a 3-inch deep layer of icy “snow”, which is perfect for penguins to play. 

Penguins aren’t the only animals that benefit from machine made ice. The polar bears at SeaWorld are kept cool with flake ice. Flake ice is packable, which is a distinct advantage in this application because it permits trainers and zoo keepers to form pack ice that simulates the bears’ natural environment. The animals, which naturally thrive in sub-Arctic temperatures, are thus furnished with a comfortable habitat in which to play, sleep and eat.

The suitability of flake ice machines in these applications is measured by the animals’ observed health, behavior and reproduction. Flake ice has a proven history of success in enclosures for penguins, polar bears and even sea lions at a number of zoos around the world. Flake ice machines have thus played an invaluable role in creating happy and frosty environments for wildlife. 

As a new member of AZA, Howe is excited to support the efforts of animal conservationists and scientists with our machines. For more details about our flake ice equipment for zoos and aquariums, please contact one of our experts today!