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Zürich Zoo

Address Zürichbergstrasse 221
Telephone 0848 966 983
How to Find it: We suggest you should take public transporation means to reach the zoo. It is more relaxed and is also environmentally sounder.Our suggestion is that you take public transport to get to the zoo, because it has the benefit of being more relaxed and is also environmentally sound. The zoo is also easily accessible by car. Parking space, however, is limited and even more so on Sundays, public holidays and school vacations.
Open: The zoo is open 365 days a year. March – October 9 am – 6 pm (Masoala Rainforest 10 am – 6 pm) November – February 9 am – 5 pm (Masoala Rainforest 10 am – 5 pm)
Area: Notice: * There are five wheelchairs available. Please contact someone at the main entrance if you need one. If you want to retain one in advance, please call: 044 254 25 43. * In deference to our visitors and the animals, dogs, with the exception of guide dogs, are not allowed within the zoo. Dog kennels are available – please contact cash desk number 1. * Inline skates, kickboards etc. are not to be used within the zoo.
No of Species No of Animals Star Rating
Mammals Conservation
Birds Enclosures
Reptiles Education
Amphibians Recreation
Fish Research
Total 0 0
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This critique last updated:  Oct 2010

Official Description

Goals of the zoo

The zoo – a cultural institution in Zurich – acts as an ambassador between humans, animals and nature. We want to contribute to the sustainable continuity of biological diversity by addressing large parts of the population in an attractive and exciting way. We develop our activities based on an innovative and economical management and a sound, future-oriented, sustainable financing. In doing so, we directly profit from the large public interest in our attractive zoo and capitalise on an ever tightening cooperation in the worldwide web of zoological gardens.

Visitor Reviews

Reviewed by Moos, July 2010

Like many zoos all over the world, Zürich Zoo is busy modernising their enclosures. Though a lot has been changed already in this Zoo, some relics of the past can still be seen (or admired, for those who love history). Located at the Eastern outskirts of town leaning against the Zürichberg, the designers made great use of this mountain with its trees and shrubs. At some point they make you believe that the animals can roam around freely in a natural environment. Like the spectacled bear and the coatimundis who both live in the clouded forest, which is a magnificent green place with a waterfall and little stream, and rocks and foliage to shelter the animals. Just a few viewing spots allow the public to observe the animals. The Swiss mountains cannot be compared with the roughness of the Himalayas at high altitude, nevertheless the enclosure for the snow leopards provides a good feel of how life would be in real nature for those wild felines. And they seem to do very well. Although the female is limping with her right hind leg, which shows muscular atrophy, the pair produced a cub just a month ago at 5 May. Almost all the enclosures for the carnivores are spacious and provide shelter, hide-outs and places where the animals can survey the area. This makes it sometimes hard for the public to see the animals, but it is what I expect from a good zoo: focus on the animal's welfare.
Therefore I was so disappointed with the newly designed enclosure for the Pallas' cat, which turns out to be just a big mesh wired cage. Old-fashioned exhibition built it in 2006, incredible! Another disappointment was the enclosure for the Asiatic small-clawed otter, which was situated inside with no outside areas at all, like in Amsterdam Zoo, but unlike Amsterdam there was only a small pond for the animals. The Asiatic elephant's house is too small and in due time these big animals will be transferred to a bigger enclosure, which is under construction and scheduled to open in 2012. The ungulates are waiting for extension of their enclosures and creation of real herds, but overall they are well-off.

The enclosure for the primates deserves special attention, because it is so surprising. From the outside it is inconspicuous, but as soon as you enter the building it appears to be a gem. You can find 8 orang-utans, 5 adults and 3 young of different age. There are also 8 gorillas, one silverback and 5 young, next to pileated gibbons with young, siamang and yellow breasted capuchins. The enclosures for the orang-utans and gorillas is not very large regarding the number of animals to house, but they all seem to enjoy themselves. The young playing with each other and with all the objects provided, and climbing on the mesh wired walls and roofs. There are enough areas where they can separate animals, when newly introduced, sick or being an outcast. They created  more or less specific environments for the different species using different bedding, and different enrichment. The connected outside areas are not large, and are still built according the exhibition principle, unfortunately.

In general the animals are bio-geographically grouped, which is stressed by creating artificial borders on the pathways to show the visitor he is entering another bio-zone. The Zoo even has a dedicated enclosure mimicking a Madagascan jungle, the Masoala rainforest, which is built close to the original zoo grounds. It is attached via a footpath, but it has also a separate entrance. It is impressive. It is artificial, but it provides the feeling of a real jungle, a jungle with a roof. It smells even like real jungle. Red ruffed lemurs are foraging above your head like they own the place, and they do of course. Walking along the path you can meet a chameleon and the birds are flying around in the enormous space. According the information provided, the Masoala rainforest, as a big greenhouse, is an energy and greenhouse gas friendly exhibit, which altogether adds to the amazement this artificial jungle generates.

As said before the Zoo is still modernising the grounds. This is visible when entering the Zoo, where just after the entrance work is in progress on a South-American enclosure, Pantanal, for capybaras, Chile flamingos and ant-eaters, and an island for squirrel monkeys which will be accessible for the public. To be ready in spring 2012, and all being realised with private funds!

The Zoo has an impressive track record regarding their breeding results, which shows during my visit, because many species produced offspring lately.

GoodZoos.com Reviews

Species List


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