The Twin Falls Zoo in the Magic Valley Mall is coming along, slowly but surely. We got a chance to take a tour of the facility while it is under construction and meet some of the animals that are going to be there, and many coming soon.

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This guy really likes to say "hello" when you walk away. Not when you are right there talking to him, no. Just when you walk away he calls you back.

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This guy is the literally definition of a leaping lizard. Literally. They have to put this fence on top of the water enclosure because he likes to jump out and wander. This guy will not be for petting but he will be for observing and he is cool.

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Baby porcupine! That is all I should have to say. This is Willow. Willow is hand trained and very friendly. She will be one of the main attractions because kids will be able to touch her. She may even have a leash and walk around the zoo.

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She is seriously so cute! And very rambunctious. Porcupines actually prefer tighter quarters in their burrows so they feel secure. However, when her enclosure is complete she will have plenty of room to roam.

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Seriously, look how cute she is!

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She is a very curious little one. She was pulling her cage all around.

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This is a Florida Softshell turtle with a weird bottle-like nose that is super interesting.

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All the turtles!

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This is a snapping turtle. Do not get your fingers close. They do bite. He was definitely eyeballing me, waiting for me to try to touch him.

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This one was the definition of eyeballing me. He wanted to see what was up in the safety of a crate.

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This is an axolotl. Unfortunately, the person the got this guy did not take the best care of them. They may have tried really hard but an axolotl is incredibly difficult to care for. They are hoping the medicine is going to make him better, but they aren't sure yet. How cute though!

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How cool is this guy! He was just perched there, hanging out, waiting for food.

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This one was epic! You could feel how strong this snake is when you held it. You could feel the muscles moving as they wrapped around your arm. Super friendly, super intimidating, but super friendly.

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This is a great way to get more comfortable with snakes if you are afraid of them. This will make you more comfortable and know more about snakes and their behavior.

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Apparently, these guys are the Venus flytraps of the reptilian world. They are alligator snapping turtle hatchlings. They like to sit there with their mouth open and wait for things to swim into their mouth before they slam it shut.

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This had to be one of my favorites. This lizard is beautiful, very brightly colored, and very comfortable around people. Once you start petting him he starts to fall asleep

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I mean look at this stud. The funniest part was when they carefully put him back on his branch after virtually falling asleep in his hand, he fell off his branch. He is fine though. He apparently falls asleep on his branch and falls all the time. Silly lizard.

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Here we go with a couple of cautionary tales. If you do not know how to take care of an animal, do some research, find a professional, and ask questions. This tortoise did not have the proper light or diet. The shell is disfigured permanently due to those issues.

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This one has a growth, because, again, it did not have the proper nutrition. This one was fed nothing but fruit. The growth on the beak thankfully does not inhibit their ability to eat. It is full of nerves, so if for some reason it becomes a problem, they will have to have it surgically removed. Until it is a problem, the stress of the surgery is too great to risk at this point

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This is a healthy and happy tortoise.

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Did you know these tortoises don't really bite, their arms are spiked so they can punch something that is aggressive toward them? It is an African spurred tortoise and this one really enjoyed the shell rubs.

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Check out the colors on this one! So cool!

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I had never seen a water turtle like this before. That nose is so cute! It looks like a pig nose.

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This is a baby American alligator. While it is being handled, it is still potentially dangerous. This one really likes rubs on top of the head.

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They also make this chirping noise when they are happy. It is a "mommy" signal and shows some comfort. And while it doesn't look like their teeth are that bad, they are tiny little razor blades.

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Let's just finish up with bottle feeding Willow the baby Porcupine. I think she is my favorite.

The Twin Falls Zoo has been trying to get up and running for a while now. Delays on parts and products have caused construction to stall. The goal is to be open this year but a date can't be determined. I can't wait it is going to be amazing. They are also hoping to expand to an external zoo as well.

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