The Top 10 Interesting Facts to Know About The Montgomery Zoo

montgomery zoo - Healthier Pets Today

Montgomery Zoo is a 40-acre on the north side of Montgomery, Alabama. The zoo is an independent city department supported partly by The Montgomery Area Zoological Society. 

This popular family destination spread over 40 acres, is home to over 700 animals from five continents, including the famous Bengal tiger

A train ride around the park provides an overview of the site and a chance to determine where you want to go later for a closer look.

It is an accredited Zoological Association of America member and participates in twenty-one Species Survival Plans. 

In 1991, the zoo was home to Alabama’s first African elephant birth. In 2013, the first Indian rhinoceros conceived by artificial insemination was born at the zoo. 

The Mann Wildlife Learning Museum opened in February 2002. The museum features taxidermy displays focusing on native wildlife, game species, and management.

1. History of Montgomery Zoo

montgomery zoo - Healthier Pets Today

The Montgomery Zoo reopened at its present location. It started with a six-acre space that included a miniature petting zoo, a variety of monkeys, and a chimpanzee named Benji. 

This event became a yearly event and is now called Zoo Weekend. Today,  Zoo Weekend will host as many as 18,000 guests.

2. Groundbreaking Events

In 1989, groundbreaking took place, expanding the zoo to 40 acres. After years of construction, the community welcomed a new zoo in 1991. 

Barrier-free and multi-species exhibits highlighted the expansion. In 1993, the cougar and lynx exhibit was opened in the North American realm.

The Reptile House, jaguar, and the new chimpanzee and colobus monkey exhibits opened in the African sphere.

 In 1994, the bald eagle exhibit opened in the North American realm, and Monkey Island was renovated entirely in South America. In 1997 the American black bear exhibit opened and the first baby cheetah was born.

Three months later, the Birmingham Zoo’s two male lions, Vulcan and Baren, were displayed in their exhibit at the African realm. 

Three years after being sent to Salt Lake City’s Hogle Zoo, two lions from Woodland Park Zoo were brought in to breed with two lionesses.

3. Membership Admission

montgomery zoo - Healthier Pets Today

To use your Montgomery Zoo membership to gain entry to the Zoo/Museum for regular daytime admission (and qualified nighttime events, like the Christmas Lights Festival), the specified adult members listed on the membership must have their Montgomery Zoo-issued membership card along with a valid government-issued photo identification. 

Suppose you have lost, misplaced, do not have, or have yet to receive your membership cards. 

In that case, you must provide valid government-issued photo identification to use your membership to gain entry to the Zoo/Museum for regular daytime admission (and qualified nighttime events, like the Christmas Lights Festival).

Guest passes are NOT intended to be used for admission to any special event, including nighttime events. 

No one can use a Guest pass to access any particular or nighttime event; only the people listed on the membership will be given admission. 

Guest passes must be present for admission (one per entry). Entry/admission will only be allowed with the current guest pass (one per entry).

4. Australia Exhibit

The Australian Realm is observed from a boardwalk. Initially, it displayed Australian animals, and it is currently in redevelopment. 

This exhibit opened with red kangaroos, dama wallaby, parma wallaby, emu, black swan, cereopsis shelduck, and magpie goose. 

The small seasonal display, which formerly housed warthogs and aardwolf, currently houses red river hogs.

Current occupants of the old kangaroo yard include a pair of Pygmy hippos, Black Swan, and Pekin ducks.

5. Asia

montgomery zoo - Healthier Pets Today

The zoo is home to a large Asian hoofstock exhibit. It is home to many iconic Asiatic species.

There are habitats for Bengal tigers and Indian rhinoceros. The zoo welcomed its first male baby rhino on 1 October 2006. 

The first Indian rhinoceros born by artificial insemination was born on 5 June 2013.

6. Africa

The African Realm exhibit is the largest at the zoo, featuring the African Savanna Elephant habitat opened in 2005 with three female elephants. 

Across the pool from the elephants is the hoofstock. This exhibit has several viewing stations, including a double-decker viewing platform.

7. South America

South America is the original and oldest section of the zoo. The enclosures here need to be updated, and this section is full of smaller, more traditional, and less modern exhibits. 

Here, you will encounter the following animals: a Jaguar, a Sloth bear (indigenous to Asia), and a Toco toucan.

8. Mann Wildlife Learning Museum

montgomery zoo - Healthier Pets Today

In 2003, the Montgomery Area Zoological Society purchased the Mann Wildlife Learning Museum and shipped it to the Montgomery Zoo. 

The collection of big animals on display was taken with a bow and arrow by trophy hunter George Mann.

Guests visiting the Mann Wildlife Learning Museum can touch and feel the furs and antlers of some animals on display. 

Visitors can enjoy a unique experience observing the animals in a three-sided show, allowing for up-close viewing of their natural habitats.

 Visitors can enjoy a unique experience observing the animals in a three-sided show, allowing for up-close viewing of their natural habitats. 

The displays are crafted using authentic materials such as wild plants, rocks, trees, dirt, and sand collected from the very site where the animals lived.

9. Feeding Stations

Feeding stations are situated at the Asian koi fish pond. The zoo also has a Giraffe Encounter outlook situated in the giraffe exhibit in the African realm. 

Parakeet Cove is another recent edition, built-in 2012. Feeding sticks for the budgies may be purchased. 

Parakeet Cove is located in the Australian sphere near the entrance of the Zoofari Skylift Adventure Ride. 

Feed for the petting zoo animals may be purchased here. It is located in the playground area in the Asian realm of the zoo. 

The keepers host a daily lion talk and training session and an elephant talk and training session.

10. Touch and Feel Exhibit

montgomery zoo - Healthier Pets Today

In 2010, the Montgomery Zoo began raising funds to construct a touch-and-feel stingray display where visitors would have a chance to quickly interact with free-swimming stingrays enclosed in an oval-shaped 30′ x 12′ saltwater pool

The exhibition was officially announced on 1 March 2018 in a press release by Melanie Golson, the Montgomery Zoo’s Public Relations Director. 

On Tuesday, 6 March 2018, Stingray Bay was officially opened to zoo guests. Touching and viewing the stingrays is a free experience included in the general admission price while feeding the stingrays costs $10 per person.

Along with its main attraction, the exhibit consists of a smaller secondary tank full of exotic fish, such as the Emperor angelfish, the Ocellaris clownfish, the Blue Tang, and many more. 

The entire exhibit cost just under $1,000,000 to construct. The exhibit is next to the Mann Wildlife Learning Museum and is located near the Zoo’s Chimpanzee exhibit.

Interesting Facts to Know About The Montgomery Zoo…

Future Plans are being made for a butterfly pavilion to be built in honor of those with breast cancer.

A large banner providing information about the new facility is currently hanging on the outside gate, located in the Zoo’s South America of the Greater Rhea area. 

The new facility replaces the zoo’s current Reptile House, also found in the South American domain.