What is Zoo Leipzig doing for species conservation?

Mankind is increasingly interfering with nature, destroying the habitats of many animal species or threatening their existence by hunting and overfishing. The conservation of biodiversity is one of the most important issues of today.

Our commitment to the conservation of species is reflected by our participation in almost 80 breeding programmes all over the world. Zoo Leipzig has participated in reintroduction programmes, which mean that the eagle owl, the little owl, Przewalski’s horse and the scimitar oryx can now be found in their natural habitats again.

Since 2017 visitors can donate „1 Euro for conservation“ with every ticket purchase that goes directly to species conservation projects all over the world. Some of the more important ones are shown below.

[Translate to English:] Amurtiger

StudBooks and breeding programs at Leipzig Zoo

To ensure the survival of endangered species, zoos from around the world have to work in close cooperation.

In international and regional StudBooks data is collected for over 1,000 animal species worldwide – from tropical snail species to the Asian Elephant.

[Translate to English:] Zwei  Ranger und ein Affe, EPRC Beschlagnahmung auf Rangerstation
[Translate to English:] EPRC Handaufzucht Kleideraffe
[Translate to English:] Nationalapark Cuc Phuong, Blick von oben
[Translate to English:] EPRC-Pfleger mit Weißwangen-Schopfgibbons
[Translate to English:] EPRC-Veterinärbehandlung
[Translate to English:] Zwergplumplori auf einer Hand
[Translate to English:] Zwergplumplori Handaufzucht

Primate Rescue Center in Vietnam

Since 1993 the Endangered Primate Rescue Center (EPRC) in Cuc Phuong National Park has been taking in confiscated and mostly critically endangered primates and rehabilitating them or their offspring for reintroduction to the wild. Since 2002 Zoo Leipzig has provided financial support to the EPRC and since 2007 it has been training local keepers with a Leipzig zookeeper on site. In 2013 it adopted full sponsorship of the station.


[Translate to English:] Cat Ba - Wasser und Felsen
[Translate to English:] Cat Ba Languren auf Felsen
[Translate to English:] Cat Ba - Forschungsboot
[Translate to English:] Cat Ba - Langur im Gebüsch

Conservation of endangered Cat Ba langurs in Vietnam

Another project in Vietnam is committed to the conservation of the rare Cat Ba langurs. Around 65 individuals remain in the wild and can only be found on the island of Cat Ba in the Halong Bay. Since 2019 Zoo Leipzig has been funding a conservation project that has its own staff to protect the langurs (among other things against poaching). The project also supports rangers in the National Park there and provides environmental education in schools.


[Translate to English:] Nahaufnahme Nashorn Tam

Sumatran rhino and rainforest conservation on Borneo (Malaysia)

Since 2010 Zoo Leipzig and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research Berlin have been supporting a breeding station for the rare Sumatran rhino on Borneo. Unfortunately, attempts made so far to breed this species have been unsuccessful. Since it is assumed that only a few rhinos now remain on the entire island of Borneo, this project will have a new focus. In addition Zoo Leipzig financially supports the association Rhino & Forest Fund with a reforestation project, whose goal it is to connect two important wildlife reserves with a forest corridor. Areas of former oil palm plantations are being planted with trees for this purpose.

[Translate to English:] Nasenfrosch auf einem Blatt
[Translate to English:] Nasenfrosch auf einer Münze - Größenvergleich
[Translate to English:] Lebensraum Nasenfrosch - Chile, Blick auf Berge und Wälder
[Translate to English:] Nasenfrosch auf Waldboden
[Translate to English:] Zuchtgehege Nasenfrosch

Breeding of Darwin’s frogs in Chile

The numbers of Darwin’s frogs (which are only a few centimetres long) are in decline. Since 2005 Zoo Leipzig has therefore been supporting a project that researches the decline of this amphibian species and since 2009 it has been operating its own successful breeding and research station at the University of Concepción (Chile). Since 2015 a second endangered species, the Vanzolini’s spiny-chest frog is also kept there.

Population counts of large carnivores in Ethiopia

In the future Zoo Leipzig intends to support a new conservation project for a large carnivore species in Africa. In preparation for this project funding is currently being provided for a scientific study to count populations of all large carnivores in Ethiopia. An optimal project is to be developed based on these population counts of lions, cheetahs, wild dogs and hyenas. The results will also be shared with all other institutions in the country.

Przewalski’s wild horse
Europäischer Uhu auf einem Ast
Europäische Wildkatze schlafend im Gras
Zwei Säbelantilopen grasend
Mehrere junge Steinkäuze in den Händen

Endangered species reintroduction programs (worldwide)

Compared with the number of threatened animal species, there have only been a handful of successful reintroduction projects. Due to the fact that these need to be accompanied by scientific research over many years, they can be very complex and expensive. Zoo Leipzig has been supporting this work for decades by maintaining species gene pools with significant genetic diversity and providing surplus animals for reintroductions. In this way Zoo Leipzig has already been able to provide animal species from Leipzig for reintroductions including the European wild cat, the Eagle Owl, the Little Owl, Przewalski’s Horse, the Oryx dammah and the White Stork.