From the sloth bears in their ravine to the elephants in their temple: your expedition to Asia will take you to a fascinating world of plants and animals.
Anoas and Przewalski’s horses roam the area, tigers prowl through the Taiga and multicoloured birds fly over the heads of visitors. Sometimes the sound of chattering, snorting and trumpeting seems to engulf you, while at other times there is an eerie silence while the animals rest.
Watch the largest cats in the world in our Tiger Taiga, where Amur tigers are quietly prowling around. Sometimes they will even sit curiously in front of the see-through panel themselves – then you can truly sense them breathing! From various positions it is possible to admire the big cats lazing or splashing around. At the information point in the old stag house there is a very interesting exhibition about these majestic and yet very endangered species.
In the immediate vicinity you will enter a rocky landscape with brooks running through it – Leopard valley opened in March 2014. The Amur leopards found here along with less than 100 individuals that remain in the wild count as one of the species most threatened with extinction in the world.
Where different bear species were once kept, is now a fun place mainly for our younger zoo visitors to experience an exciting climbing area. The historic monument Bear Castle has now been converted into the Bear Castle Adventure Playground. A 12-meter dragon climbing frame is in the middle of the complex where polar bears, brown bears, Asiatic black bears and spectacled bears were once kept. Five playing areas in the former stage-like enclosures represent the stages of evolution, starting with fish and amphibians, followed by reptiles, birds and finally mammals. Here, a variety of playground apparatus now provide varied entertainment and educational fun for children.
The playground paradise is complemented by service facilities and the Bear Castle Café allows you to take a breather and chill out in the middle of the zoo.
The high-mountain landscape is the new home for the snow leopards and the red pandas. Where feline predators were once presented on stony ground, you will now find near-natural enclosures with sand, scree and vegetation in front of an impressive rocky Himalayan landscape. This complex design provides its inhabitants with 1,000 square meters of habitat that is characteristic for the species. Furthermore, the Himalayan landscape in Leipzig gives visitors a fascinating insight into the living conditions of these endangered species. From September 2017 the walk-in aviary will shine in new glory after its renovation according to historic preservation principles and will house griffon vultures and northern bald ibis. Modern education stations, different viewing perspectives and the proximity to the animals all contribute to making the high-mountain landscape “Himalayas” a new attraction in our “Zoo of the Future”.
It’s all action in the sloth bear ravine! The bears can be seen rolling around on the grass and climbing up trees. They share one of their two large outdoor enclosures with Rhesus macaques and are surrounded by artificial rocks and water ditches. Looking at the animals through a crevice in the rocks or from behind the waterfall gives you an insight into the world of these animals close to their natural habitat in India!
You will be amazed when you visit our elephant temple Ganesha Mandir. Our Asian pachyderms impressively patrol one of the most modern elephant enclosures inEurope. Depending upon the weather the animals can either be in the ornate temple building, in the extensive outdoor enclosure or in the bathing pools. Weighing as much as five tons these enormous animals love water. In fact, on a regular basis you can watch our elephants swimming underwater through a glass screen in the temple cellar – a unique experience for every visitor! You can get more information about the bathing times in the elephant house.
The Asian aviary is music to your ears: Little egrets, Glossy ibis and White-winged ducks are giving it all they’ve got with you in the middle of it all because our Asian aviary is a walk-in one. Opposite you will find the second historic aviary from 1928. At the moment it is being newly designed as part of the construction work for the master plan project “Himalayas”. When it is finished, vultures and other Asian bird species can be seen here.
In our steppe landscape the Przewalski horses feel very much at home. But where does the name of the horses come from? The Russian researcher Przewalski discovered this Mongolian wild horse back in 1879. Sadly, the species became extinct in the wild by 1969. Nowadays, they have been successfully reintroduced in their natural habitat together with individuals that were bred at Zoo Leipzig.
In the small deer house that was built in 1908 these rare cloven-hoofed animals look forward to seeing you. Since 2009 the Visayan warty-hog has been living here that is threatened with extinction on the Philippines. Very little is still known about this species – you can best observe them on your own. Our anoas can also retreat to this deer house, when they are not grazing in their enclosure at the pond. Both species obviously like it here as breeding has been successful on numerous occasions, which is a zoo success story in its own right!