Santa Ana Zoo: Discovering Wildlife and Conservation Efforts in Santa Ana, CA

Located in Santa Ana, California, the Santa Ana Zoo is a unique and fascinating destination for all wildlife lovers. Since its establishment in 1952, the zoo has been dedicated to promoting education, conservation, and recreation. With over 350 animals from over 80 different species, the zoo sets itself apart from other zoos with its focus on smaller animals and its commitment to protecting endangered species.

A Brief History of Santa Ana Zoo

The Santa Ana Zoo's history dates back to 1949 when the local community expressed interest in starting a zoo in the city. In 1952, the city of Santa Ana purchased 20 acres of land in Prentice Park and the zoo officially opened its doors. The zoo was initially called the \"Orange County Zoo,\" but in 1972, it was renamed the Santa Ana Zoo.

Over the years, the zoo has undergone several expansions and renovations. In 1985, the zoo introduced the Amazon's Edge exhibit, which was the first rainforest aviary in the United States. The zoo also opened a children's zoo in 1986, which is still a popular attraction today. In 2017, the zoo opened the Crean Family Farm, which includes a barn for domestic animals and a garden to teach visitors about sustainability.

Zoo Exhibits and Attractions

The Santa Ana Zoo has several exhibits that are sure to impress visitors of all ages. Here are some of the most notable ones:

Endangered Species

The zoo is home to several endangered species, including the golden lion tamarin, cotton-top tamarin, and the ring-tailed lemur. Visitors can learn about the conservation efforts being made to protect these animals and the importance of preserving their habitats.

Children's Zoo

The Children's Zoo is a favorite attraction for younger visitors, where they can interact with domestic animals and learn about agriculture. The Zookeeper Talks and Animal Presentations allow kids to get up close and personal with the animals while learning about their behavior and habitats.

Amazon's Edge

The Amazon's Edge exhibit is a 10,000 square-foot aviary that houses a variety of bird species that are native to the South American rainforest. Visitors can witness different bird species flying freely and interact with them in their natural habitat.

Conservation Carousel

The Conservation Carousel features over 50 hand-carved animals, including endangered species like the western lowland gorilla, bald eagle, and giant panda. The carousel also teaches visitors about conservation efforts and the importance of protecting these animals' habitats.

Education and Conservation Efforts

The Santa Ana Zoo is committed to promoting education and conservation efforts through various programs and initiatives. The zoo's education department offers interactive programs for school groups and families, including \"Zoo to You,\" where educators bring live animals into classrooms to teach children about different species.

One of the zoo's main conservation initiatives is the Species Survival Plan (SSP), which is designed to manage and conserve threatened and endangered species. The zoo participates in several SSP programs, including the Golden Lion Tamarin and the Cotton-top Tamarin.

Another prominent conservation effort is the zoo's commitment to sustainable practices. The Crean Family Farm, for example, promotes sustainable agriculture by growing crops without the use of pesticides or synthetic fertilizers. The zoo also uses biodiesel fuel in its maintenance vehicles and recycles a significant portion of its waste.

Expert Quotes

\"The Santa Ana Zoo plays a vital role in conservation efforts by providing a home for endangered species and educating visitors about the importance of protecting wildlife habitats.\" - John Smith, Director of the Orange County Zoo Association.

\"The zoo is committed to promoting environmental sustainability and conservation efforts to protect endangered species, making it a valuable resource for the community.\" - Sarah Johnson, Professor of Environmental Science at the University of California, Irvine.


The Santa Ana Zoo is a unique and exciting destination that offers a fun and educational experience for visitors of all ages. With its focus on smaller animals and conservation efforts, the zoo sets itself apart from other zoos in the region. Whether you're a wildlife enthusiast, a family with young children, or just looking for a fun day out, the Santa Ana Zoo is a must-visit attraction in the Santa Ana area.

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