Animal Encounters

Animal Encounters

You can get nose-to-beak (or snout) with animals at the National Aviary when you book an Animal Encounter! Get one-on-one time with a bird of prey, hang out with a sloth, or spend time with a penguin. Encounters are limited in size, so you’ll have a one-of-a-kind, personal experience as a National Aviary expert shares fascinating facts and details about the animal ambassador you are meeting. Gain a deeper understanding of a unique bird or mammal and learn about the important role they play in nature as you get closer than ever! 

All National Aviary Animal Encounters now include general admission!

  • Sloth Encounter

    If life in the slow lane is more your speed, spend time with a Linnaeus’s Two-toed Sloth. Learn about these adorable creatures and what it’s like to spend life upside-down.

    Sloth Encounter
  • Sloth Encounter + Painting

    Participants get the opportunity to watch Valentino engage his senses by creating a one-of-a-kind masterpiece for you to take home! Guests will also get the chance to feed him his favorite treats and touch his soft fur!

    Sloth Encounter + Painting
  • Penguin Encounter

    Meet an African Penguin up close! Learn how penguins make themselves waterproof for life lived partially underwater. Get to know the National Aviary penguins’ favorite foods, and find out how you can help protect this endangered species.

    Penguin Encounter
  • This Spring: Interactive Penguin Feeding

    Feed the entire colony of African Penguins, available April 1 - November 15! Suit up and join an expert in Penguin Point. Penguins will come right up to be fed their favorite foods during this one-of-a-kind immersive experience.

    Interactive Penguin Feeding
  • Owl Encounter

    With enormous eyes and feathers designed for silent flight, owls are masters of the night skies! Hold an owl on your gloved hand and learn how their hearing and eyesight help them navigate in the dark.

    Owl Encounter
  • Falcon Encounter

    Falcons are fast and fearsome flyers, among the fastest animals in the world. Meet a falcon up close and learn how their special adaptations make these birds of prey the masters of the skies.

    Falcon Encounter
  • Jr. Toucan

    Your little one will be amazed at how close they can get to this pint-sized tropical bird!

    Jr. Toucan Encounter

In The News

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The National Aviary summer camps are superhero-themed and focus on the amazing adaptations that birds possess.

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On one particular occasion, the National Aviary was able to pull off a grand proposal that included penguins playing as the true love masterminds behind it all.

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Feed A Sloth At National Aviary In Pennsylvania For An Adorable Adventure | Only in Your State

Explore the National Aviary in Pittsburgh, a family-friendly destination that’s home to countless birds and a few mammals – from penguins and bald eagles to sloths.

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Four months after the National Aviary opened its $3 million renovated Wetlands exhibit, the space is getting high marks — not only from visitors, but also from the birds.

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