Infrastructure & Habitat Repairs

Building a Better Zoo for you

Thanks to the support of Tucson voters, we have been hard at work improving your Zoo! As you walk around the grounds, look for these improvements that make for a comfortable guest experience.

Completed Zoo improvement projects include:

  • Replacing and painting guardrails throughout the Zoo to keep guests and animals safe
  • Repairing concrete walkways for safer, smoother movement around our grounds, especially for guests using wheeled devices
  • Installing automatic door openers in the restrooms, café and at the exit. These changes make accessibility even easier for guests using strollers and/or wheelchair

Animal Habitat Improvements

Flamingo
A bright flash of color now greets guests when they begin their Zoo adventure at the new Flamingo Lagoon! These magnificent birds are named from the Spanish “flamengo,” or “flame-colored.” Their new home gives  them plenty of space to wander and more room to flap their colorful wings as they balance gracefully on one leg. The calming lagoon will be surrounded by tropical plants and naturalistic rock formations.
JaguarIn 2019 the jaguar habitat was updated prior to Bella the jaguar’s arrival.  Some of the updates in the habitat included more aerial perching and resting places, more soft grassy areas for rolling in, and more vertical enrichment opportunities. Our maintenance team added a fresh look with lots of creature comforts!

Solar

The City of Tucson has gone solar! Reid Park Zoo’s parking lot now has shady solar panels. We are excited about the city’s commitment to renewable energy — and the covered parking it provides for our guests.

Temple of Tiny Monkeys

The Temple of Tiny Monkeys was the first big project in the Zoo’s Master Plan, and replaced the former snack bar in South America. The South American ruins theme will transform the entire area and extends from the monkeys’ habitat to the nearby restrooms.

Andean Bear

The Andean bear habitat received a major upgrade, with a small expansion maximizing the space for Oja the Andean bear to enjoy. The viewing windows of this habitat have been replaced, preventive maintenance has been conducted, and a cubbing den has been added to help Oja grow her family!

Lions

The lion habitat has seen many improvements over the two years! The mesh panels in the habitat were replaced with a mesh that has holes large enough to provide additional enrichment, but small enough to prevent a lion from reaching out with a paw.

Now, guests will be able to observe the animal care team working with the lions on habitat, and may be able to see the animals’ daily health checks (such as paw, mouth and eye inspections) conducted. The viewing glass in the habitat was also replaced, to allow guests a better view of the lions.

A large door was also added to the habitat so large piles of sand, logs, and other enrichment items can be more easily hauled into the lions’ home. This access provides staff the opportunity to change out large scratching post logs, which was not possible previously. These changes promote lion health and wellness all while providing a great visitor experience.

Lion-Tailed Macaques

The lion-tailed macaques  have a new man-made “tree” structure in the thanks to our amazing maintenance and grounds team. Lion-tailed macaques, which sport silver-white manes, like to live and move about the trees, but they also like to retreat from time to time. This new addition gives them additional enrichment opportunities as they go on and off habitat.

Meerkats

The meerkat mob has move into their expanded habitat and Zoo guests now can enjoy watching them through two new viewing windows. The new space gives the mob two separate habitats to explore, both highly visible for all guests. Come see these highly social animals in their new home closer than ever before!

Otters

The otters are having a great time playing and exploring in their newly renovated home. A large new manmade log gives the otters a high perch and a new viewing window lets you see them closer than ever before! Additionally, more shade has been added to both habitats to provide a more comfortable experience for both the animals and guests during warmer temperatures.