Thinking Inside the Box

Toco toucans (at least ours anyway!) love to peer into mysterious containers in hopes of discovering treasures hidden within. Once they have pillaged said treasures, they then love to destroy the containers in which they were held, although not always in that particular order. One of their most favorite treasure-holders are cardboard boxes.

Cardboard boxes make one of the best toucan toys because:

– they are free and readily available, coming to our island by the cartloads twice weekly with the resort’s F&B orders

– using them for toucan toys is kind of like recycling them

– they come in a variety of shapes and sizes

– and most importantly, they present a worthy, time-consuming (ie. entertaining) destruction challenge in the grips of toucan beaks

Watch Paz work furiously at destroying her box:

However, like anything with toucans, you’re dreaming if you think you can keep providing the same old boxes and be met with enthusiasm time after time. I promise you they will yawn your butt right out of Toucanland before you can say play. Once the Three-Cans have conquered a box, they are pumped and ready to take it to the next level.

A simple way we mix up the boxes is by varying the shapes, sizes, and amount of access holes we cut into them. Sometimes we leave the top of the box open for peering in from above, and sometimes the box is completely closed, only providing access with holes cut into its sides. Also, depending on its size, we will alternate how it is hung whether it be horizontal, vertical, or hung from multiple places to encourage pushing and swinging.

We have also discovered a fun way to up the ante is to compartmentalize the interior of the box. This box below was originally used for jars of hot sauce. We left the cardboard bottle separator inside and dispersed the hidden toys amongst the cubby holes.

Watch Paco formulate a play of attack when he meets this box creation:

This box below was quite large with an interior divided into two parts. This feature added intrigue for the Three-Cans as it swung, offering two different box options, depending on which side was facing them. Paco is on the floor in this picture because he was so impatiently excited about the box, he had to investigate before I even had a chance to hang it!

This next box was designed with Pepe in mind. He tends to be a bit less motivated of an explorer than Paz and Paco, and does not prefer to have to work too hard to get to his toys. This soda flat box is perfect for him because he can easily see most of his toys, leaving a few hidden for surprises under the cardboard covers we added.

Watch Pepe play with his personalized creation:

For more on the toys we create for our Three-Cans, you can see this past post: Let’s Get Creative! Making Toys for Toucans.

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  1. Pingback: Our Top Toucan Toy Picks | Adventures in Toucanland

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