At the L.A. Zoo, we believe our responsibility toward wildlife conservation extends beyond safeguarding the animals in our care. That’s why we actively participate in the preservation of some of the world’s most critically endangered species and their habitats.
Commitment to Conservation
The L.A. Zoo dedicates funds, expertise, and staff to a wide variety of conservation projects all over the globe, with a special focus on those that target wild counterparts of animals in our collection. They include:
- Turtle Survival Alliance
- Red Uakari Conservation Project
- Black-Winged Starling Project
- Javan Warty Pig Recovery Project
While our reach is global, two of our greatest conservation successes have been local in nature—the California Condor Recovery Plan and the Peninsular Pronghorn Recovery Plan. Both have been instrumental in restoring populations of critically endangered animals to their native habitats.
California Condor Recovery Program
The primary focus of this multi-entity effort is the captive breeding and reintroduction of California condors to the wild, with the aim of establishing a self-sustaining wild population.
Partners include the U.S. Forest Service, National Park Service, Bureau of Land Management, Arizona Game and Fish Department, California Department of Fish and Wildlife, Utah Department of Fish and Wildlife, the federal government of Mexico, the Yurok Tribe, San Diego Zoo, Oregon Zoo, Santa Barbara Zoo, Chapultepec Zoo, The Peregrine Fund, Ventana Wildlife Society, and others.
The Los Angeles Zoo does more for this program than any other zoo—training staff at partner institutions, managing on-site breeding programs, monitoring eggs and chicks in the field, providing veterinary treatment, and more.
Since the program’s inception in 1982, the world population of California condors, which dipped to as low as 22 in the 1980s, has climbed to more than 420 individuals—with half of those birds living in the wild.
At the Zoo
Because of the sensitive nature of our work with California condors, they are not currently exhibited to the public. But Zoo guests can get incredible views of these iconic birds via live webcam feeds at the California Condor Rescue Zone, an educational, engaging interactive play space located in our Entry Plaza.
Peninsular Pronghorn Recovery Plan
The goal of this project is to breed critically endangered peninsular pronghorn—which are?native to Baja California—and release animals to the wild. Working alongside our partners (including Espacios Naturales y Desarrollo Sustentable AC, the San Diego Zoo, the Living Desert, and the Vizcaino Biosphere Reserve), the L.A. Zoo has been able to steadily increase the population, once as low as 50 individuals. As a result, these animals are now roaming terrain where they haven’t been seen in decades.
At the Zoo: Guests can view peninsular pronghorn at the L.A. Zoo adjacent to the Grevy’s zebra exhibit.