The "Zoo of the future"

When innkeeper Ernst Wilhelm Pinkert founded a zoo in 1878 he most certainly did not suspect that he would be laying down the foundations for one of today’s most impressive and famous zoos.

In its long, moving history Zoo Leipzig has undergone many changes, but it was not until the master plan for the Zoo of the Future in the year 2000 that made it into what it has become today.

Leipzig zoo masterplan stand 2018

A forward-looking master plan

Zoo Leipzig stands for a unique concept that includes animal welfare and husbandry, species conservation, education and exciting explorer tours. We are well on the way to becoming a Zoo of the future. Our zoo accommodates about 850 animal species and subspecies and is among the most renowned and most modern zoos in the world.

Here you can experience the ape world Pongoland, which is unique of its kind in the world or Europe’s largest individual population of sloth bears. And with Gondwanaland a fascinating tropical experience world that is the size of two football pitches, you can see tropical rain forest right in the middle of Leipzig.

Zoo director Prof. Dr. Jörg Junhold on the "Zoo of the future"

"Zoo Leipzig belongs to the most modern and innovative zoos in the world. With the concept of the Zoo of the future we are able to combine animal welfare and husbandry with a unique experience for visitors to our zoo."

Since 2000, Zoo Leipzig is realizing the advanced concept. At the same time, the zoological garden is improving its attractiveness, both for the animals living there and for its visitors: The animals feel ‘at home’ in habitats that have been created to resemble their natural ones and visitors experience nature with all of their senses on a walk round the zoo.

This ambitious program shall be fully realized by 2022. “We have come a long way towards the "Zoo of the future". But the remaining tasks are challenging and require a high degree of involvement.“

Cover und eine Inhaltsseite des Internationalen Tigerzuchtbuches und ein Tigerfoto

Our responsibility to wildlife

We are committed to species conservation in more than 80 breeding programmes.

Thanks to Zoo Leipzig’s participation in reintroduction programs the Eagle Owl, the Little Owl, the Przewalski’s Horse and the Oryx dammah can now all be found again in their natural habitats.

We are also involved in international breeding programs for Tigers, Anoas and Maned Wolves, as well as European breeding programs for African Dwarf Crocodiles, White-naped Cranes, Anoas, Maned Wolves and Sloth Bears.

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Creating habitats that resemble those in the wild

We have designed our enclosures according to state-of-the-art animal husbandry and have recreated settings that resemble the natural habitats of those animals in the wild.

Concrete, steel and tiles have all been replaced in today’s zoo by extensive Savannah, tree borders and various waterbodies. "By 2015 we will have mostly got rid of the cages and created Zoo of the future in 5 steps that represents wild habitats" Zoo Director Dr. Jörg Junhold explains, looking at the constantly progressing transformation.

In the next step the theme and animal world ‘South America’ will be modernised, following the theme worlds Africa, Asia, Pongoland, Founder’s Garden and Gondwanaland.

Go to our theme worlds