Spring has sprung and a baby woodchuck, skunk kitten, American alligator, Florida soft shell turtle and ostrich chicks have arrived at the Racine Zoo, 2131 N. Main St.

For the first time this year, they will also have baby octopuses. Several of the babies will be kept in the Zoo’s nursery, which is located in the Benstead Discovery Center.

Within a week the button quail chicks will make an appearance and Zoo visitors can watch the action in the nursery incubator.

“This baby boom is a wonderful opportunity for the community to interact, get close to and follow these animals as they develop from babies into adulthood,” said Jay Christie, president and chief executive officer of the Zoo. “Plus, we all have our fingers crossed that our two Transvaal lions, Aslan and Azizi, produce a litter of cubs later this summer.”

Visitors who have zoo memberships will be able to get a sneak peek from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday and enjoy a hot dog dinner, train rides and other surprises.

Current hours are 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.  Admission rates are: members and children two and under: free, children two to 15: $6, seniors: $7, and adults: $8. Racine County residents take $1 off with valid photo I.D. For more information on the Racine Zoo, its programs and events, visit

Denise Lockwood has an extensive background in traditional and non-traditional media. She has written for Patch.com, the Milwaukee Business Journal, Milwaukee Magazine and the Kenosha News.