San Antonio Zoo and Aquarium

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San Antonio Zoo
Date opened 1914
Location 3903 N. St. Mary's Street
San Antonio, Texas, USA
Coordinates 29°27′53″N 98°28′19″W / 29.4648°N 98.4719°W / 29.4648; -98.4719Coordinates: 29°27′53″N 98°28′19″W / 29.4648°N 98.4719°W / 29.4648; -98.4719
Land area 35 acres (14 ha)[1]
Number of animals 3,500+
Number of species 750
Annual visitors 1,100,000+[1]
Memberships AZA[2]
The San Antonio Zoo Eagle train carries visitors throughout Brackenridge Park.
Several refreshment outlets, including Crossroads Café, are available at the San Antonio Zoo.
A carousel nearing completion will open in 2014 in the San Antonio Zoo.
Desert plant and terrain exhibit at San Antonio Zoo

The San Antonio Zoological Gardens and Aquarium is an Association of Zoos and Aquariums-accredited zoo in Midtown San Antonio, Texas, United States. The 35-acre (14 ha) zoo has a collection of over 3,500 animals representing 750 species. The zoo's annual attendance exceeds 1,000,000. It also runs non-animal attractions, such as the 2 ft (610 mm) narrow gauge San Antonio Zoo Eagle train ride, which first opened in 1956 and utilizes three Chance Rides C.P. Huntington locomotives.[3]

The Richard Friedrich Aquarium was opened in 1948.[4]


What is now known as the San Antonio Zoo began in 1914 when Colonel George Washington Brackenridge, one of the city's leading citizens, placed bison, deer, monkeys, African lions, and bears on land he had deeded to the city. The land became Brackenridge Park and Golf Course.

The San Antonio Zoo opened two of the first cageless exhibits in the United States in November 1929 that offered visitors views of the animals not available in caged exhibits. The Richard Friedrich Aquarium was dedicated in 1948, and the Hixon Bird House, funded through the efforts of Colonel Frederick C. Hixon, opened in 1966. The zoo's bird collection is now one of the world's largest.

The San Antonio Zoo housed the first herd of addra gazelle in captivity in 1969 and continues to be active in the breeding program for this critically endangered species. Due to the former hoofstock quarantine point in San Antonio, the San Antonio Zoo has historically had a wide variety of hoofstock species.

The zoo is involved in breeding a number of endangered species including black rhino, leopard, golden lion tamarin, dama gazelle, Attwater's prairie chicken, black mangabey, African lion, black-footed ferret, Komodo dragon, Andean condor, and Caribbean flamingos.

The zoo recently opened Phase II of the Africa Live project. Phase I brought a new exhibit for hippos with underwater viewing area and one for new Nile crocodiles as well as many other smaller animals. Phase II contains Angolan colobus monkeys, okapi, African hunting dogs, rock hyrax, and various species of birds contained in the second largest aviary in the world. On June 18, 2013, a two-headed turtle, along with three one-headed turtles hatched. The two-headed turtle was later named Thelma and Louise after the 1991 film. Thelma and Louise later died on July 29, 2014, from unknown causes.


Africa Live![edit]

A hippopotamus comes up for air at his abode in the San Antonio Zoo.

Africa Live! is the San Antonio Zoo's newest exhibit. Consisting of three phases, Phase I and Phase II are complete, while Phase III has yet to start construction. Africa Live! gives guests a chance to experience Lake Tanganyika and Lake Malawi. Guests can observe the hippopotamus, Nile crocodile, and African cichlids through underwater viewing windows. Also found in Africa Live! are Angola colobus, okapi, Cape hunting dog, rock hyrax, Wolf's mona monkey, and various species of birds.

Phase III of Africa Live will consist of new or remodeled exhibits for African Elephants, zebra, giraffes, and rhinoceros.

African Plains[edit]

African Plains takes visitors through a rocky, arid expanse, backed by natural limestone walls. African Plains hosts a number of animals including zebra, ostrich, topi, marabou stork, and various antelope.


Amazonia houses the zoo's South American plants and animals. The zoo's main waterway makes up a large portion of Amazonia. The open flight deck allows guests to enter the exhibit and observe scarlet ibis, among other birds, the family of spider monkeys, giant anteaters, and purchase food to feed tilapia.

Several cats, including the jaguar and ocelot are located within Amazonia. The exhibit is also home to New World monkeys including tamarins, marmosets, capuchin monkeys, and sakis. Other animals include anaconda, armadillos, sloths, bats, and the Andean condor.

Cat Grotto[edit]

A cave-like area for visitors to walk through. It houses the zoo's smaller cats, such as a fishing cat, black-footed cat, clouded leopard, and a caracal. As well as a few mammals that look similar to cats: ringtail, fossa, and a northern treeshrew.

Cranes of the World[edit]

The zoo contains whooping cranes, blue cranes, Manchurian cranes, and the hooded crane. The exhibit is a lush environment constructed on the existing waterway that allows guests to be immersed in the cranes' habitat. It is an opportunity that is becoming increasingly rare in the wild.

Gibbon Forest[edit]

Spanning the quarry wall is the zoo's white-cheeked gibbon exhibit. With plenty of ropes to swing on, they stay high above, while below a family of Oriental small-clawed otters plays in the river.

Hixon Bird House[edit]

A fully enclosed circular building, with glass-fronted enclosures displaying a wide variety of bird species from all over the world. In the middle of the rotunda is a small island planted with trees and shrubs, and containing a small pond. The free-flight birds stay here, and sometimes venture out into the open to explore.

Nature Spot[edit]

Richard Friedrich Aquarium[edit]

Rift Valley[edit]

Visitors head straight from African Plains to Rift Valley. Walking uphill, the zoo displays large animals such as white rhinoceros and cheetah, as well as smaller animals such as dik-dik, duiker, and a Bateleur eagle. As you head back down, you'll come across more antelopes, warthogs, and the lions.


A building housing the zoo's amphibian collection, including frogs, toads, salamanders, and caecilians.


Lemur at the San Antonio Zoo

The San Antonio Zoo contains these mammals:
Addax, Addra gazelle, African crested porcupine, African pygmy goat, African wild dog, Asian small-clawed otters, Asian elephant (one), Francois' langur, Bat-eared fox, Black howler monkey, Black-and-white ruffed lemur, Black-footed cat, Black-handed spider monkey, Black-tailed prairie dog, Blue duiker, Babirusa, Black mangabey, Bush dog, Capybara, Cheetah, Coati, Colobus monkey, Common squirrel monkey, Common warthog, Common zebra, Cotton-headed tamarin, Fishing cat, Fossa, Geoffroy's marmoset, Giant anteater, Goeldi's monkey, Golden lion tamarin, Golden-bellied mangabey, Golden-headed tamarin, Goodfellow's tree kangaroo, Hippopotamus, Jaguar, Kinkajou, Kirk's dik-dik, Malayan tapir, Lemur, Linne's two-toed sloth, Naked mole-rat, Nine-banded armadillo, North American black bear, Northern tamandua, Northern tree shrew, Nubian ibex, Ocelot, Okapi, Oriental small-clawed otter, Pale-headed saki, Parma wallaby, Pied tamarin, Prevost's squirrel, Red kangaroo, Red river hog, Red ruffed lemur, Reeves' muntjac, Ringtail cat, Short-tailed bat, South American tapir, Southern white rhinoceros, Spectacled bear, Spekes' gazelle, Spotted hyena, Sumatran tiger, Topi, Vietnamese pot-bellied pig, White-cheeked gibbon, White-throated capuchin, Wolf's guenon, Yellow-backed duiker, Yellow-footed rock wallaby,


The San Antonio Zoo contains these following birds:
Andean tinamou, American common goldeneye, American white pelican, American flamingo, Attwater's prairie chicken, Australian shelduck, Australian wood duck, Bateleur eagle, Bahama pintail duck, Bali/Rothschild's mynah, Bananaquit, Bar-headed goose, Bartlett's dove, Black and white mannikin, Black swan, Black-billed whistling duck, Black-necked stork, Black-necked swan, Black-throated laughing thrush, Blue-bellied roller, Blue-bellied kingfisher, Blue ground dove, Blue-grey tanager, Blue-winged goose - marbled teal - hooded merganser, Boat-billed heron, Brazilian teal, Bruce's pigeon, Bush stone curlew, Cattle egret, Chestnut teal, Chilean flamingo, Chiloe wigeon, Chinese hwamie, Cinnamon teal, Common barn owl, Common shama thrush, Congo peacock, Coscoroba swan, Crested pigeon, Crested screamer, Crested wood partridge, Common crowned pigeon, Demoiselle crane, Double-barred finch, Double-wattled cassowary, East African crowned crane, Eastern rosella, Eastern screech owl, Egyptian plover, Emerald starling, Emu, European wood pigeon, Fairy bluebird, Forsten's lorikeet, Fulvous whistling duck, Giant kingfisher, Gold coast turaco, Guira cuckoo, Golden-breasted starling, Violet-backed starling, Gouldian finch, Great blue turaco, Greater flamingo, Green aracari, Green junglefowl, Madagascar partridge, Green oropendola, Green-naped lorry, Green winged macaw, Grey wing trumpeter, Guam rail, Banded rail, Hadada ibis, Hammerkop, Hill mynah, Hooded crane, Hottentot teal, Inca tern, Lady Ross turaco, Laughing gull, Lavander finch, Laysan teal, Lesser bird-of-paradise, Lesser vasa parro,t Little blue heron, Madagascar teal, Magpie goose, Magpie shrike, Maguari stork, Malay great argus, Malayan peacock pheasant, Manchurian crane, Marabou stork, Mauritius pink pigeon, Metallic starling, Micronesian kingfisher, Military macaw, Moluccan radjah shelduck, Musk lorikeet, Namaqua dove, New Guinea masked plover, Nicobar pigeon, Green-winged dove, Blue ground pigeon, North American ruddy duck, North American wood duck, Obi violet-necked lorry, Ocellated turkey, Orange cheeked waxbill, Ostrich, Painted stork, Palawan peacock pheasant, Palm cockatoo, Cockatiel, Orange-cheeked waxbill, Peruvian thick-knee, Pied imperial pigeon, Plumed whistling duck, Purplish jay, Rainbow lorikeet, Red bird-of-paradise, Red bishop, Red-and-yellow barbet, Red-billed whistling duck, Red-capped cardinal, Red-legged honeycreeper, Red-crested finch, Antillean euphonia, Red-crested pochard, Redhead duck, Red-legged seriema, Ringed teal, Rose-ringed parakeet, Rosybill, Rothschild's peacock pheasant, Sacred ibis, Salvin's pigeon, Croaking ground dove, Sandhill crane, Scarlet ibis, Scarlet macaw, Secretary bird, Snowy crowned robin chat, Snowy egret, Speckled mousebird, Speckled pigeon, Spectacled owl, Stanley crane, Sun bittern, Sun conure, Superb starling, Swainson's lorikeet, Swan geese, Taveta golden weaver, Tawny frogmouth, Vasa parrot, Victoria crowned pigeon, Wattled crane, West African crowned crane, White stork, White-bellied bustard, Buff-crested bustard, White-bellied stork, White-crested laughing thrush, White-crowned pigeon, Mauritius pink pigeon, White-faced whistling duck, White-headed buffalo weaver, White-naped crane, White-naped raven, Pied crow, White-winged wood duck, Whooping crane, Wreathed hornbill, Yellow-breasted ground dove, Diamond dove, Zebra dove



The San Antonio Zoo contains these following reptiles:
African mud turtle, African rock python, Aldabra tortoise, Alligator snapping turtle, Amazon tree boa, American alligator, Angolan python, Armenian viper, Armstrong’s rattlesnake, Aruba island rattlesnake, Ball python, Banded alligator lizard, Banded rock rattlesnake, Black milksnake, Black wood turtle, Bull snake, Caatinga lancehead, Cagle's map turtle, California kingsnake, Coahuilan box turtle, Corn snake, Crocodile lizard, Cross-banded rattlesnake, Cuban false chameleon, Cuvier’s iguana, Dumeril's ground boa, Dunn's hognose viper, Durango mountain kingsnake, Dwarf caiman, Dwarf crocodile, East African green mamba, Eastern box turtle, Egyptian cobra, Emerald alligator lizard, Eyelash palm-pitviper, Fischer's chameleon, Flap-shelled turtles, Gaboon viper, Gharial, Giant Mexican horned lizard, Giant South American river turtle, Green anaconda, Green tree python, Grey-banded kingsnake, Guatemalan palm viper, Habu, Hamilton’s pond turtle, Humantlan rattlesnake, King cobra, Komodo dragon, Madagascar ground boa, Malaysian painted terrapin, Mang Mountain viper, March's palm-pitviper, Matamata, Mexican beaded lizard, Mexican black-tailed pitviper, Mexican giant musk turtle, Mexican ground alligator lizard, Mexican lance-headed rattlesnake, Mexican milksnake, Mexican pygmy rattlesnake, Mexican twin-spotted rattlesnake, Mixtecan alligator lizard, Mottled rock rattlesnake, New Mexico ridge-nose rattlesnake, Nile crocodile, Northern blue-tongue skink, Northwestern Neotropical rattlesnake, Oaxacan alligator lizard, Olmec viper, Orinoco crocodile, Prehensile-tailed skink, Querétaro dusky rattlesnake, Radiated tortoise, Red spitting cobra, Red-eared slider, Reticulated python, Rhinoceros ratsnake, Rhinoceros viper, Rosy boa, Rowley's palm-pitviper, Russian blunt-nosed viper, San Luis mountain kingsnake, Savu Island python, Schelopusik, Snub-nosed viper, Southern lined pine snake, Southern ridge-nose rattlesnake, Southern Sierra Madre spiny lizard, Speckled palm pitviper, Spiny-tailed monitor, Standing's day gecko, Tamaulipan flat rock lizard, Tamaulipan rock rattlesnake, Taylor’s cantil, Tentacled snake, Terciopelo, Terciopelo, Texas slider, Texas spiny lizard, Texas tortoise, Thai bamboo ratsnake, Tomistoma, Trans-Pecos ratsnake, Vogel’s river turtle, West African green mamba, Western cottonmouth, Western diamondback rattlesnake, Western hognose snake, Western painted turtle, Yellow sided twist neck turtle, Yellow-spotted Amazon River turtle


The San Antonio Zoo contains these following amphibians:
African bullfrog, American bullfrog, Axolotl, Black-spotted newts, Dying poison arrow frog, Emperor newts, European fire salamander, Giant marine toad, Golden frog, Golden mantilla, Green toad, Green tree frog, Green-and-black poison arrow frog, Gulf Coast toad, Japanese giant salamander, Mexican burrowing frog, Mexican dumpy frog, Puerto Rican crested toad, Red-eyed tree frog, Red-spotted toad, Rio Grande leopard frog, Rio Grande siren, Sierra Madre Salamanders, Spadefoot toad, Texas Toad, Tiger salamander, Vietnamese mossy frog, White’s tree frog, Yellow-banded poison arrow frog, Yellow-striped caecilian

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Zoo Facts: San Antonio Zoo". San Antonio Zoo. Retrieved 6 May 2011. 
  2. ^ "List of Accredited Zoos and Aquariums". AZA. Retrieved 6 May 2011. 
  3. ^ San Antonio Zoo - Zoo Train
  4. ^ "Exhibits at the San Antonio Zoo." San Antonio Zoo and Aquarium. Retrieved on January 15, 2009.

External links[edit]