Shanghai Zoo is to combine education with entertainment during the Spring Festival with a special exhibition for children.
To celebrate the Year of Mouse, the zoo has moved the warm tanks in which the rodents are kept to grass areas for children to observe at close hand to compare the different breeds and their behavior.
More than 100 wild, pet and laboratory rodents, of 17 breeds, will be featured in the exhibition. Some rare breeds , such as naked mole rats and chinchillas, will be on show.
A member of the rodent family looks forward to greet children at the Shanghai Zoo where an exhibition marking the Year of the Mouse is to be held. (photo: Shanghai Daily)
To explain the huge variety of rodents, the zoo will be weighing the largest-coypus, or nutrias-and the smallest-tiny hamsters-in front of visitors.
"In people's minds, mice are fat, gray and black, and harmful to human beings. We wish to change that stereotype through this exhibition," said Pan Xiuwen, a zoo official.
Zoo officials will also tell children about ancient Chinese tales about the creatures.
The exhibition is from today to March 7.
(Shanghai Daily February 2, 2008)