The Ark Encounter, featuring a 510-foot-long Ark, is a massive endeavor. Besides the fact that we are constructing the largest timber-frame structure in North America, our team of researchers, designers, and fabricators has been preparing exhibits to fill the spaces in and around the huge Ark. As anticipated, much of this work has centered on animals.
Over the past few years, we have been involved in a research project to determine how many kinds of animals boarded the Ark. After estimating the total number of animals, based on a “worst-case scenario” approach, we had to estimate the size and mass of the animals. Using this information, we calculated how large the enclosures would need to be for each kind of creature.
Following an earlier study on animal kinds, we grouped the animals into eight different sizes. Our artisans took these details and designed a variety of enclosures, taking into consideration a range of special needs. For example, many amphibians and reptiles require living spaces that can hold water.
Upon completion of that research, our fabricators began constructing hundreds of cages. The enclosures will include space for the feeding and watering systems we have designed, based upon known and assumed building techniques and technologies in use before and shortly after the Flood. The largest cages are built of wood beams and poles. The smaller enclosures are made of wood and bamboo, and can be stacked and set in an array that would allow animal waste to drop through the slots in the floor and into a designated location for easier removal.
Currently stored in our warehouse, these cages will be moved to the Ark Encounter property and set up when the shell of the full-size Ark is complete.