1997 - 2006
In 1998, the viewing area of the gorilla habitat at Gorilla Tropics got a panoramic upgrade. The exhibit was so popular that it quickly became crowded on busy days, making it difficult to see the great apes. The public side was expanded into a two-tier observation gallery, and the viewing window was doubled to 50 feet long, providing a sweeping perspective of the front of the habitat. Guests could also come right up to the glass, and the gorillas could do the same on their side—and often chose to do exactly that. The gorillas also got a home remodel, with new ficus and palm trees planted, large deadwood logs and gnarled tree roots provided for climbing, and a grassy slope added—which the young gorillas found just perfect for tumbling and doing somersaults.