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Fort Worth Zoo’s Shelly Collinsworth Shares Her Favorite Things

what she loves for travel, birdwatching and more

Our Mom Next Door and the Fort Worth Zoo’s bird expert, Shelly Collinsworth, shares the things that make her happy as a lark.

Favorite Family Vacation

Disney World. It was all-inclusive, and they help you plan with kids. I didn’t feel like I was having to juggle plans the whole time. Disney World was actually a vacation for Shane and me, as well as for the kids.”

Best Place to See Birds Outside of a Zoo

South Africa was pretty amazing because what I consider a zoo-collection bird was right in your backyard. It’s a little shocking to have hoopoes land there—you want to run and get a camera.”

Favorite Children’s Books About Birds

What’s in the Egg, Little Pip? by Karma Wilson and Jane Chapman
No Two Alike by Keith Baker
Fine Feathered Friends: All About Birds (Cat in the Hat’s Learning Library) by Tish Rabe

Go-To for Unwinding

“Reading. I’m a big reader, huge reader. I go through two or three books a week. Kindle Unlimited is awesome because, otherwise, I couldn’t afford my habit.”

For Family Fun

“We like to play board games every night. We have a game closet and a game cabinet, and they’ll pick a game or cards, and we’ll sit around and play games for the evening until it’s bedtime. We love Exploding Kittens.”

How She Gets Active

“With the family, it’s bike riding. Here at the zoo, it’s the walking—all day, every day. I do sit in my office; I have paperwork and things to do—but I’m kind of lucky that the bird building is 10 minutes away, so there’s a lot of walking.”

Photo courtesy of Nick Prendergast.