About us

A zoo in transition

In the 19th Century, narrative works about wild animals and lands far away captivated humans, making animal shows grow in popularity. This enthusiasm caused the landlord Ernst Pinkert to convert his restaurant ‘the Pfaffendorfer Hof’ into a zoological garden. On Whitsuntide in 1878 4,500 visitors congregated for the opening of the zoo to see kangaroos, parrots and oryx as well as the Bengal tiger and a pair of lions. Since then Zoo Leipzig has managed to grow and live through two world wars and times of economic recession and political turmoil owing to its commitment, persistence and visions.

1878 Pinkert

1878

On 9th June, Ernst Pinkert opens a restaurant (the Zoological garden of Leipzig). From the public house „Pfaffendorfer Hof“ that includes an animal enclosure one of the first zoos in Europe is born. 

1900 Affenhaus1900 Raubtierhaus

1900/1901

The zoo is extended. Within only two years a new building for big cats is built as well as the primate house and the main and administrative buildings.

1910 Aquarium außen

1910

The aquarium is built, in which fish and other sea creatures from all over the world still swim today. 

1913 Terrarium Innenansicht1913 Terrarium

1913

The aquarium is extended to include a terrarium. Snakes, lizards and even alligators are still housed in this Wilhelminian-style building today. 

1926 Elefant

1926

Visitors can admire pachyderms from Asia in the newly opened elephant house. 

1928 Flugkäfig1928 Jasonanlage

1928

Wild activity at all heights – the aviaries and the outdoor pens for the big cats are opened. The Jason monument is also erected. 

1929 Bärenburg

1929

Bears move into the newly erected bear castle. 

1934 Pinguinanlage1934 Pavianfelsen

1934

Island enclosures are built for macaque monkeys, baboons and penguins. 

1935 Tierkindergarten

1935

Fun for both kids and adults: the zoo builds an animal kindergarten for stroking, petting and feeding. 

1969 Freiflughalle

1969

The birds start chirping: the walk-in birdhouse opens its doors. It houses exotic bird species at tropical temperatures. The zoo school is also established.

1976 Huftierfreianlage1976 Huftierfreianlage

1976

On the Rosenthal paddock the ungulate enclosures are finished. African domestic goats, Chinese water deer and Australian red-necked wallabies come to Leipzig.

1992 Aquarium außen

1992

One of the oldest parts of the zoo is renovated: after 82 years the aquarium is finally renovated and extended. Additional tanks create new habitat for the fish. 

1997 Nashornanlage

1997

The rhino and anoa enclosures are redesigned and the terrarium is modernised. 

2001 Löwensavanne2001 Pongoland

2001

The new Millennium gets off to a good start for African big cats and primates as the lion Savannah Makasi Simba and Pongoland open their gates.

2002 Arche innen2002 Lippenbäranlage

2002

The sloth bears move from the bear castle to their new home (sloth bear ravine). The historical big cat house is converted into the Explorer’s House Ark. 

2003 Tiger Taiga

2003

More habitat is created for the Asian big cats as the Tiger Taiga is finished. A glass panel down to ground level enables visitors to view the tigers swimming. 

2004 Kiwarasavanne2004 Parkhaus Zoo

2004

Excursions can now be made to see giraffes, zebras and other animals of the newly created Kiwara Savannah. The zoo’s multi-storey car park is also opened. 

2005 Okapiwald

2005

Okapis (endangered forest giraffes) are given a new home. These reclusive animals from the Congo feel at home in the specially designed forest enclosure. 

2006 Elefanten

2006

A temple in the zoo? Naturally! When all is said and done our elephants come from Asia. Our elephant temple Ganesha Mandir provides our elephants with the luxury of sand and water pools.

2001 Außenansicht Gondwanaland

2011

After four years of construction work, our fascinating tropical experience world Gondwanaland is opened. Housing around 640 exotic plant and animal species it gives visitors exciting views from the canopy trail and jungle paths or from a boat trip on the river.


Zoo Leipzig in figures

850 animal species and subspecies

Zoo Leipzig is home to around 850 different mammal, bird, reptile, amphibian and fish species.

 

6 theme and animal worlds

A trip to Zoo Leipzig takes you on a tour of the world: to Asia, Africa and South America, into the rainforest of Gondwanaland, to the apes in Pongoland and back in time to the historical Founder’s Garden.

 

200 employees

Our employees see that everything at Zoo Leipzig runs smoothly – from the aquarium to the administration. 

 

210,000 kilograms of fruit and vegetables

This is the annual consumption that is required to keep our hungry animals satisfied. Additionally, 30,000 kilograms of meat, 29,000 kilograms of fish, 19,000 eggs, 10,000 litres of milk, 5,200 loaves of bread, approximately 32,800 kilograms of pellets, 266,000 kilograms of green fodder, 129,000 kilograms of hay, 42,000 kilograms of straw and 34,000 kilograms of carrots are fed to our animals every year. 

 

27 hectares of land

This is the size of the premises of Zoo Leipzig. At the end of the 19th Century the area of the zoo amounted to only three hectares.

 

2 million visitors

Whether adult or child – in 2011 more than 2 million guests explored Zoo Leipzig.   

Mitarbeiter

Our vision and concept

This is how we work
EPRC Kleideraffen

Nature Conservation

Learn more about species conservation