It’s not just any zoo. It’s the Bronx Zoo! With over 6000 animals housed on 265-acres, it is one of the largest metropolitan zoos you’ll ever see. The Bronx Zoo is part of the Wildlife Conservation Society which manages a total of four zoos and one aquarium that are the Central Park Zoo, Prospect Park Zoo, Queens Zoo, and the New York Aquarium.
Exhibits and Attractions
Right in the center of the zoo, see Astor Court and the Sea Lion Pool. The 20th century buildings in the Court are considered part of New York City’s landmarks to see. Stroll by the pool and chat with the sea lions. They may bark back some replies! Between April and October, see the feeding of the lions at 11:00am (except on Wednesdays) and at 3:00pm.
When you hear the name Madagascar, do you think of the animated film or think immediately about lemurs? Make your way over to the Lion House and visit the wild and zany animals of Madagascar! It’s the world’s fourth largest island and the zoo has brought it closer to you with its replicated habitat. Go spelunking with the Nile crocodiles. See four kinds of lemurs playing among the trees, and find a fossa? Yes, a fossa! It’s a solitary animal related to the mongoose but has a body shaped like a puma. Come to the zoo and learn about the fossa; it’s a predator like no other!
Check out the African Plains Exhibit and say hello to the giraffes, count the stripes on all the zebras and get up close to a spirited pack of African wild dogs, as seen through the pane of a glass-fronted pavilion. Of course you will see the kings and queens – the lions of course! Hop over to the nearby baboon reserve and watch the geladas wade, graze and groom. They enjoy watching you as much as you enjoy watching them!
If you wish to find a quiet area to the zoo, head over to the Butterfly Garden. In this lush greenhouse you will be delighted by the weightless flight of many species of butterflies as they flutter to the sounds of classical music. Learn about the lifecycles, their role in the ecosystem, and stop to smell the flowers. If you’d like, you can turn your kids into bugs at the photo-op station! At the Pollination Hall of Fame, your kids can dress as bumble bees and other kinds of insects and get captured – in a photo!
Other Indoor and Outdoor Exhibits and Rides
Remember, this zoo sits on 265-acres of parkland, so there are sure to be many more habitats and places to see, so keep on the lookout for other sections of the zoo. For more outdoor exhibits and rides keep an eye out for the Big Bears, the Himalayan Highlands, Tiger Mountain, Congo Gorilla Forest, and the Zoo Shuttle. For the indoors, don’t miss the Bug Carousel, Mouse House, World of Reptiles, and even the World of Birds. And still there is so much more!
Special Events at the Bronx Zoo
From July 7 through to September 3, 2012, head to the Bronx Zoo and visit the Wild Forest – A LEGO Safari, where one can marvel at the giant LEGO sculptures of a variety of animals and exotic wildlife. See LEGO tigers, gorillas, and flamingos, among many more and even try to sculpt your own creatures with LEGO. Enjoy the musical puppet show and the Wildlife theatre performances with your family. Then walk around the zoo and find the real animals!
So explore the Bronx borough of New York City and take a walk on the wild side with the animals at the Bronx Zoo!
Photo: Julie Lanser Maher © WCS