The Louisville Zoological Gardens, a non-profit organization and state zoo of Kentucky, is dedicated to its mission to “Better the Bond Between People and Our Planet” by providing excellent care for animals, a great experience for visitors, and leadership in conservation education. The Zoo’s collections which include botanical gardens are accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). The Louisville Zoo is also an agency of Louisville Metro Government.
Opened in 1969, the Louisville Zoo currently exhibits more than 1,100 animals on 130 acres of natural settings representing zoogeographical areas, specific habitat types or special education areas including: Glacier Run, Africa, Islands, New World Exhibits (North, Central and South America), Australian Outback, the HerpAquarium and the Metazoo Education Center. The Zoo’s award-winning Islands, Gorilla Forest and Glacier Run exhibits have been recognized by AZA for their excellence and innovation. The 2016 Master Plan address the challenges and vast opportunities for the Louisville Zoo.
The Zoo’s commitment to working with endangered species, specifically with AZA’s Species Survival Plan (SSP) programs, speaks of its dedication to conservation efforts. It is also one of just a handful of institutions in the world to house a captive breeding population of black-footed ferrets, North America’s most endangered mammal. The Species Survival Plan is the AZA’s cooperative breeding and conservation program and the cornerstone of efforts to assist endangered species.
The Louisville Zoo is dedicated to providing stimulating environments for Zoo animals to enhance their well-being and enrich the quality of their lives. We share many of our animal training sessions on a daily basis to engage visitors, allow them to meet zoo keepers and learn more about our animal ambassadors and how to support conservation programs.
One of the region’s most popular family attractions, the Zoo also features concessions and catering, multiple playgrounds, several gift shops, rides and attractions including the Splash Park, Conservation Carousel, Zoo trams, Zoo adventure ropes courses, camel rides and the BOMA African Petting Zoo. Plus, the Zoo produces education programs recognized nationwide for excellence and over 50 special event days each year including Earth Month activities in April, weekend movie nights, character appearances, holiday events, the 5K Throo the Zoo Run/Walk, the annual “World’s Largest Halloween Party!”