GRAY — On Friday, May 4, at 11 a.m., the grand opening of the Maine Wildlife Park’s new, state of the art mountain lion exhibit will take place.

Over a year in construction, this ambitious project was funded in large part by the Friends of the Maine Wildlife Park. Additional and substantial contributions in time, labor and landscaping came from park volunteers, inmates from Windham Correctional Center, MDIFW engineering and wildlife park staff.

This new, spacious cougar exhibit is a total of 3500 square feet, the largest exhibit of its kind in New England. It features boulders, caves and large trees to simulate the cougar’s natural habitat; as well as large glass panels the length of the exhibit to allow for viewing and photography opportunities. The exhibit has been dedicated to Connie Kippax, a former wildlife park volunteer whose favorite animal was the cougar, and who spent thousands of hours leading tours and teaching about the park’s wildlife.

On Saturday, May 5, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., the park will feature special exhibits and displays about the three wild cat species indigenous to Maine, the Canada lynx, bobcat and mountain lion.

Special big cat feeding times have been scheduled on Saturday for visitors to view the cats, and what and how they eat. At noon, the bobcats will have lunch; at 1 p.m. the Canada lynx will eat and at 2 p.m., watch the mountain lion dine.

The Maine Wildlife Park is on Route 26.

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