A thoughtful gift, a small collection of animals, and nearly a century later...the San Antonio Zoo continues to thrive!
In 1914 Colonel George W. Brackenridge deeded a scenic plot of land to the City of San Antonio for the public viewing of elk, buffalo, deer, several monkeys, two lions and four bears. From those humble beginnings, that small plot of land has become 56 acres and home to over 8,500 animals.
We have done all that we can to share our love of animals, both in captivity and in the wild, with San Antonio.
With the forming of the San Antonio Zoological Society in 1928, the introduction of the revolutionary cageless exhibits and rare animals quickly made the San Antonio Zoo one of the leading zoos in the United States; a position we proudly maintain to this day.
Our first hundred years have seen many groundbreaking firsts at the San Antonio Zoo.
Here are a few major firsts:
1929 - The first cageless exhibit in the United States was unveiled
1956 - the first zoo in the world to exhibit the whooping crane at a time when there were only 16 left worldwide. This started our long association with the species.
1956 - The hatching of the first Caribbean flamingo in captivity, of which we remain a world leader in their breeding.
1969 - The first zoo to exhibit the rare addra gazelle. We remain successful in breeding these animals.
1972 - The first white rhino birth outside Africa.
Our passion for feeding San Antonio’s wild side continues stronger than ever. The Zoo is a place where entire families can enjoy themselves, where memories are made, and where imaginations run wild.
Where else can you see the world’s largest reptiles, hear the haunting calls of a family of gibbons swinging high in the sky, or watch an okapi pluck leaves with its foot-long tongue or meet a hippo, face to face?
We have a long history of working with endangered species.
From our work with whooping cranes that began in the 1950’s, to the 1990’s when we partnered with Texas Parks & Wildlife to assist with the endangered Attwater’s prairie chicken, we have an established history of Texas conservation.
Overall, the Zoo participates in over 230 endangered species programs, and we play a major role in breeding endangered animals from all over the world.
We’ve accomplished so much in our first hundred years, but we could not have done it without your support. We look forward to your continued partnership as we start our next hundred years!
Today, new exhibits are just as ground-breaking as those unveiled in the 1920s.
Whether it is the underwater viewing and immersive experience of Africa Live Phase One, the lush vegetation and sky-high aviary of Africa Live Phase Two, or the spacious and natural habitat of Gibbon Forest, the San Antonio Zoo is bar none in modern exhibitry, while providing our animals with the highest standard of care.
The San Antonio Zoo is the only Zoo in the United States that has a separate children’s area designed for children aged 0-5 years.
Kronkosky’s Tiny Tot Nature Spot connects toddlers with nature. Tiny explorers dig, climb, get wet, and a teensy, weensy bit dirty as they uncover and discover nature's wonders.
Kronkosky's Tiny Tot Nature Spot provides the perfect place for infants, toddlers, and their parents to "Grow with Nature."