This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The Conservation Carnivale

A mobile environmental education circus featuring Albuquerque’s Bosque ecosystem, and beyond.


Act I:    The Green Machine

Stepping inside the converted van, participants walk through the length of the vehicle, interacting with hands-on, playful micro-exhibits made of single-use plastics and found materials. Natural wonders hide throughout. Inside you will find things like:

  • Wildlife specimens* feathered, finned and everything in between
  • Real-world scientific tools.
  • Resources such as maps and field guides
  • Library of “green-minded” literature
  • Propaganda from many local organisations
  •  Examples that individual creative passions matter and influence our world!

Check out the Cicada Box

* ethically collected and sustainably sourced

Act II:   Science Circus


Outside of the Green Machine, educators and scientists play together to inform about local environmental topics. Check out our Act II Mock-Up 

The Trash Creature Collective  Professional stilt walkers, tumblers and aerial acrobats fly high up in the trees or crawl through the crowd. Dressed as common animals of the Rio Grande ecosystem, they include a sandhill crane, pillbugs, and a coyote. Ask them anything you like to learn about the animal they are dressed as. Each costume is made out of at least 70% recycled materials, stuff you find everyday in your homes!

Rio Grande Mermaid Where does the water in our sinks and showers come from? How can you reuse or buy less things? A Rio Grande Mermaid could tell you, find one in the Observation Tank, she knows all sorts of ways to use less water, eat healthy and have fun outside. Didn’t answer your question? Good thing she has so many scientist friends to always learn more from! Don’t forget to take a picture with her at The Rio Grande Mermaid Photobooth.

Porcupine Pantomime with Daniel Shaw (Or other BEMP affiliate) Daniel Shaw co-directs the citizen science Bosque Ecosystem Monitoring Program (BEMP). He and his students have collected extensive research on our porcupine species Erethizon Dorsatum. In this performance, while facts about our Bosque mascot are stated, youth actors will wonder throughout the audience and on top of the Green Machine to demonstrate different characteristics. For example, when “Teeth never stop growing, the porcupines have to be constantly chewing” is said, the performer will pretend to gnaw on a branch and show off teeth incorporated in the costume. The statement “Quills are hollow, barbed, and attached to skin like our hair and they can’t shoot them at you” could be modeled by the actor strutting back and forth, with some hand gesturing to the quills like a fashion runway model.

Forest Fire Dancers  Last year, wildfires became the poster events to discuss serious examples that climate change is here. New Mexico routinely has fires throughout its public lands and they have increased in intensity and frequency. Professional performers will represent such events as a single or multi-person live fire show in a secured space. Audience boundaries will be placed for safe proximity. A fire safety crew of no less that two people per performer will be on site and ready with extinguishers and other mechanisms for performance and environmental security. Volunteer firefighters from city or county departments will also be nearby. Show will be approximately 3 minutes, at night/evening time for fire to be seen. If sites such as Valle de Oro Wildlife Refuge do not support fire performances for obvious risks, an alternative to fire could be poi dancing with flame colored silks. Or an alternative venue with less vegetation could be found to accommodate fire dancing

Step right up and see that everything is connected!


Future projects:

Interactive civic action events and 18+ only performances (Bee-lesque)!


Stay tuned!