About San Diego Zoo
San Diego Zoo Global is a non-profit organization that operates the San Diego Zoo, the San Diego Zoo Safari Park, and the San Diego Zoo Institute for Conservation Research. It was founded on October 2, 1916, by Harry M. Wegeforth, M.D.
San Diego Zoo Global is the largest zoological membership association in the world, with more than 250.000 member households and 130.000 child memberships representing more than a half-million people. Members enjoy free admission to the Zoo and the Safari Park, a subscription to the magazine ZOONOOZ, and other benefits. Both Zoo and Park are open every day of the year.
San Diego Zoo Global is committed to saving species worldwide by uniting our expertise in animal care and conservation science with our dedication to inspiring passion for nature.
San Diego Zoo
The 100-acre (40-hectare) Zoo is home to more than 3,500 rare and endangered animals representing more than 650 species and subspecies, and a prominent botanical collection with more than 700,000 exotic plants. It is located just north of downtown San Diego in Balboa Park.
San Diego Zoo Safari Park
The Safari Park is an expansive wildlife sanctuary that is home to more than 3,000 animals representing more than 300 species. Its renowned botanical collection represents 3,500 species and 1.5 million specimens. Over half of the Park’s 1,800 acres (730 hectares) have been set aside as protected native species habitat. It is located 30 miles (48 kilometers) north of downtown San Diego in the San Pasqual Valley near Escondido, California.
San Diego Zoo Institute for Conservation Research™
San Diego Zoo Institute for Conservation Research is one of the largest zoo-based research centers in the world. Founded in 1975, it is dedicated to preserving and protecting rare and endangered wildlife and habitats. Staff develop, gather, and increase knowledge vital for the establishment of self-sustaining populations of wildlife.
The San Diego Zoo and the San Diego Zoo Safari Park are accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, and the American Association of Museums.
Giant pandas at San Diego Zoo
The San Diego Zoo has had a love affair with giant pandas ever since the visit of Basi & Yuan Yuan for 100 days in 1987. After years of red tape and tons of application paperwork, the San Diego Zoo and China agreed on a 12-year research loan of two giant pandas, Bai Yun and Shi Shi, who arrived at the Zoo in 1996. A brand-new exhibit area was built for the breeding pair, which has since been expanded and renovated and is now called the Giant Panda Research Station. In 2008, the panda loan was extended for another five years and it was renewed in 2013.