Staten Island Zoo

From Academic Kids

The Staten Island Zoo is a small urban zoo in northern Staten Island in New York City in the United States.

The zoo opened in 1936 in Barret Park. The land was willed to the City of New York by Mrs. Edward E. Hardin and reconstructed into a zoological park during the Great Depression by the Work Projects Administration. It was considered the first "educational zoo" in the nation when it opened, a status that it has maintained with an active outreach program.

Initially the focus of the zoo was reptiles, in particular including the collection of snakes housed in the zoo's Serpentarium. Although the focus of the zoo has broadened, the zoo's collection of rattlesnakes is still regarded as among the largest and most complete in North America. The current collection comprises over 400 animals of over 200 different species. Among the zoo's current exhibits is the African Savannah at Twilight. The zoo is also the home of Staten Island Chuck, a groundhog who is the official Groundhog Day forecaster for New York City.

The zoo is a member of the American Zoo and Aquarium Association.

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