Zoo Atlanta, a Must-See Atlanta Attractionby Kevin Smith Author
One of the must-see Atlanta attractions for kids age one to 99 is Zoo Atlanta with its 1,500 animals and 220 species over 40 sprawling acres of exhibits and educational sites.
History: How it All Started
Founded in 1889, local Atlantan businessman George Gress had just purchased a traveling circus that had fallen on hard times and gone bankrupt. Not sure what to do with the animals, he donated them to the city who deemed it best to open a zoo in Grant Park, the present-day location of the zoo. Tame by today’s standard, according to the Atlanta Evening Journal the zoo opened with only a black bear, jaguar, hyena, gazelle, Mexican hog, lioness, monkeys, and camels. In the 1930s Asa Chandler donated additional animals. Then in the 1950s and 1960s, the zoo was renovated and new enclosures constructed. In the 1970s the Atlanta Zoological Society was founded to raise money to fund further expansion which has led to what the zoo has become today.
Ford African Rain Forest – This is home to the gorillas. Twenty-one gorillas have been born in this habitat since its creation in 1988. Six of these gorillas are the grand-offspring of famed Will B. who lived at the zoo from 1959 to 2000. In this habitat is The Living Treehouse which is an exhibit with a series of aviaries of African birds. In this area you will also find ring-tailed, crowned, and black and white ruffed lemurs. Habitats in the Ford African Rain Forest are also included for the Angolan colobus monkeys and Wolf’s guenons.
African Plains – This habitat houses animals indigenous to the grasslands and deserts of Africa. Here you will see lions, elephants, Kori bustards, meerkats, and warthogs. In the Savanna landscape, you’ll find giraffes, zebras, black rhinos, ostriches, and a naked mole rat colony.
Giant Pandas – Zoo Atlanta is one of four U.S. zoos with habitat for giant pandas. Lun Lun and Yang Yang, female and male respectively, came to the zoo from China in 1999. Their first cub, Mei Lan was born in 2006 with several brothers and sisters to follow. This is one of the most popular exhibits in the zoo.
Asian Forest – Similar to the forests in Asia, in this habitat, you’ll see giant otters, sun bears, Komodo dragons, Sumatran tigers, and Bornean and Sumatran orangutans. You’ll also find the Orangutan Learning Tree Project within-habitat touch screen technology that engages the orangutans in computerized games and puzzles.
World of Reptiles – In this habitat, you’ll find 450 reptiles and amphibians from more than 100 species. Zoo Atlanta is known for successfully breeding Arakan forest turtles and the rare Guatemalan beaded lizard. The World of Reptiles is housed in the oldest standing public building constructed in the 1950s.
Of all the Atlanta attractions, Zoo Atlanta is both fun and educational experience for kids of all ages.
Created on Apr 25th 2019 05:30. Viewed 204 times.