Located adjacent Norfolk, Virginia Lafayette Park, the Virginia Zoological Park is a 21 ha zoo first opened in 1900 and later accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums in 1987.
Interesting Facts About The Virginia Zoological Park
• In 1892, the City of Norfolk purchased 26 ha of land owned by Lafayette Park. In 1900, the park began acquiring animals to exhibit, and by 1901 had grown its collection to over two-hundred animals including birds, mammals and reptiles.
• In 1974, the area was enclosed from the city park, and it’s name changed to, Lafayette Zoological Park. Although the area was closed in, residents of LaValette Street which was located nearby could still view see the zoo’s elephant exhibit. This resulted in strangers new to the area and unfamiliar with the zoo’s location occasionally calling the police at the sight of the elephants.
• Many of Virginia Zoological Park’s old exhibits were renovated between 1974 and 198o.
• In 1974, the Friends of the Zoo organization was founded in support for the development of the zoo. Later in 1989 the foundation was established as a non-profit organization and its name changed to the Virginia Zoological Society.
• In 1985 the zoo’s name was changed to the Virginia Zoological Park at Norfolk and accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums in 1987
• The City of Norfolk and Virginia Zoological Society adopted an extensive renovation plan which included the construction of African, Australian, Asian, North American and South American themed exhibits, a Visitor Center and an Education Complex.
• In 1999 the zoo began the first part of its Phase I plan with its 100th Anniversary and the opening of the Xaxaba African village and Gelada baboon exhibit
• In 2001 the zoo began the second phase of its development plan with its North America exhibit.
• In 2002 the zoo completed the first phase of its master plan with the opening of the African Okavango Delta exhibit.
• In 2004 the Virginia Zoological Park opened its prairie dog exhibit as Part I of its Phase II plan.
• In 2005, the zoo received its third elephant named Cita.
Doubling its collection of large animals, in 2011 the zoo opened its Trail of The Tiger exhibit featuring a variety of wildlife native to India and Southeast Asia. Some of the animals housed in the Trail of The Tiger exhibit include azure-winged magpies, binturongs, chestnut-breasted malkoha, fairy-bluebirds, Malayan tapirs and rhinoceros hornbills. Trail of Tiger also features an elevated walkway extending above “Asian forest”, and a cave which offers visitors a view inside the orangutan exhibits. A separate viewing area allows an underwater view of the zoo’s collection of otters and tigers.
Virginia Zoological Park Webcams
Virginia Zoological Park Panda Cam
Virginia Zoo’s Panda Cam offers live webcam viewing of its Red Panda enclosure. Click on the link below and watch Virginia Zoo’s resident pandas including Oscar, Missy, and Bernadette along with Oscar and Bernadette’s four cubs Charlie, Thomas, Ginger and Cinnamon in their habitat. Due to a considerable loss of habitat the Red Panda is considered as one of the many endangered species today.
View Red Panda Animal Cam.
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