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Peoria Zoo logo
|Date opened||1955 |
|Land area||14 acres (5.7 ha) |
|No. of animals||232 |
|No. of species||>100 |
The Peoria Zoo (formerly Glen Oak Zoo) is a zoo located in Peoria, Illinois, in the United States. The zoo is owned and operated by the Peoria Park District and is open daily except Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year's Eve, and New Years Day.
In 2009, the zoo opened the new Africa exhibit, nearly doubling its size. At the same time it changed its name to "Peoria Zoo."
The zoo's adult female Amur (Siberian) tiger, Kyra, mother of four cubs (two males - whose conservation plan called for them to eventually be relocated to other zoos - and two females), died suddenly on the evening of Sunday, August 18, 2013, of what preliminary was believed to be a serious acute infection that turned septic. The four cubs are now considered orphans, as their father is kept in a separate enclosure for their safety; the plan for the cubs to be separated may have to be delayed and/or altered.
The Africa exhibit opened in 2009 after more than a decade of planning and two and a half years of construction. In this exhibit, the visitors walk around the main area on a boardwalk, and can see across the entire expanse of the enclosure. The main area is divided into two sections, the northern section containing giraffes and gazelles, and the southern section being home to zebras and rhinos. Lions have their own enclosure, as do the mandrills. red river hogs and colobus monkeys share a home, and the African crested porcupines and Aldabra giant tortoise also live together.
A small animal building houses smaller animals such as the zebra mouse, giant Zambian mole-rats, pancake tortoises, dung beetles, Madagascar hissing cockroaches, African rock pythons, Madagascar tree boas, and Taveta golden weavers.
The Zambezi River Lodge overlooks the Africa exhibit. The facility provides concessions, and is also available for receptions and conferences.
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Plans for the future include a new 7,000 square feet (650 m2) entry complex with ticketing, food services, a gift shop, and educational facilities, as well as an expansion to the parking lot.
The zoo has itself detailed new plans for an Australia Walk-About Exhibit with a 600 square foot aviary featuring native Australian birds (some of which visitors will be allowed to feed); planned animals are wallabies, black swans, and emus, among many others.