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Paul Murphy / Eyewitness News
Email: pmurphy@wwltv.com | Twitter: @pmurphywwl

The Audubon Zoo has enacted it's cold weather plan. Tuesday, peacocks were the only ones walking through the zoo on this unusually cold day in New Orleans.

Behind the scenes, most animals are in their enclosures for the duration of the inclement weather.

'Most of our animals, we've got them locked up in their quarters, inside barns where they'll be protected from the weather,' said zoo curator Joel Hamilton.

Hamilton says their biggest concern is if the zoo loses power.

'A lot of our supplemental heat that we have throughout the zoo, like the avery, are electric powered,' Hamilton said. 'So, if the power goes out we have generators here. We have generators that kick in automatically for buildings like the reptile building to keep them warm.'

Some animals and birds like flamingos are actually pretty cold tolerant and they should be okay during the current cold snap.

'Flamingos, actually there's a variety of different species, but some of them actually come from very high altitudes and they're tolerant of the temperatures enough that some of the northern zoos keep them out, year round,' said Hamilton.

Hamilton is urging pet owners to bring their dogs and cats indoors during the cold weather. He says extra precautions should also be taken for outdoor pets.

'You certainly need to protect your animals and give them, like we do for our animals that might not come into a warm building, we give them thicker beds to bed down in,' Hamilton said. 'We provide them extra heat, make sure water, open water, not frozen water, water they can consume and make sure that you're giving them food on a regular basis so that their not having their food frozen, so that they can have some food intake to create that energy to help keep themselves warm.'

The Audubon Zoo will remain closed until further notice.

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