Grand Opening November 2023
Construction continues at the Africa Trail making great strides toward opening our newest expansion, Predator Passage.
Upon completion, the final element of The Pride Campaign, the $8.5 million 6-acre expansion will be the Zoo’s largest capital project to date, adding an extraordinary immersive experience to Arizona’s world class Zoo. Guests will soon enjoy the up-close viewing of lions, hyenas, meerkats, warthogs, red river hogs, a fennec fox, Ruppell’s griffon vultures and an Amur leopard.
Predator Passage is slated to be complete in May. However, the public opening will be deferred until November; it’s safer for the health and well-being of two female lions, hyenas, red river hogs and meerkats to transport them during cooler months.
We are pleased to share a few current photos of the Predator Passage construction site. The new Africa Trail will feature an overhead bridge that will take you over the road to a viewing tower where you’ll look west into the lion habitat!
The habitats and buildings are African-themed with colorful graphics and large sunshade sails.
Courtesy of Dave Seibert
(Click on an image to enlarge)
Set your support for the Phoenix Zoo in stone with a brick in Predator Passage! A Predator Passage brick is the perfect way to celebrate an exciting life event, such as a birthday, graduation, wedding, or birth. It is also a special way to honor a loved one or pet. Purchase your own personalized brick today – don’t miss your chance to become a “piece” of the Zoo!
African Lion & Hyena Habitat
This remarkable new habitat will feature a 10,000-square-foot yard and a 7,700-square-foot yard. The two species will alternate, however, the lion pride will likely be in the larger habitat more frequently.
We are initially obtaining a group of three brothers (from separate litters) approximately 8-years-old from the Capron Park Zoo in Massachusetts. Meerkat acquisition could be delayed some as meerkats can only be obtained after receiving the required permits to hold this species, and the permitting process can take significant time.
Amur Leopard Habitat
We are receiving a two-year-old male Amur leopard! Although not an African species, they are recognized as an ambassador for the African leopard. The Amur leopard is critically endangered and found in southeastern Russia and northern China.
Red River Hog Habitat
This new habitat will provide guests a unique opportunity to see these colorful pigs that are full of personality! Red river hogs, also called “tufted pigs,” are native to western and central Africa. They are fast runners and exceptionally good swimmers.
Rüppell’s Griffon Vultures Habitat
The new habitat will house our 13 current Rüppell’s griffon vultures and any offspring produced. Prominently featuring these vultures in their own habitat, we will be better suited to highlight their ecological importance and the threats they are facing. Vultures are already the most threatened group of raptors in the world, and this new habitat will provide the opportunity to educate guests about AZA conservation efforts and the Saving Animals From Extinction (SAFE) program.
Southern Ground Hornbill Habitat
The current lion habitat may convert to the Southern ground hornbill habitat. This enormous, sociable, ground-loving hornbill is easily recognized; the adult male has an extensive brilliant red face and throat wattles, while the adult female has purple-blue skin in the center of the red throat patch.
building a future
The Phoenix Zoo is a non-profit organization that receives no government operating subsidy. It relies solely on earned income and philanthropic support. Of the $15.3 million campaign total, $1.5 million will be restricted to a permanent endowment to support operational and maintenance expenses of these new expanded projects.
For more information, contact Lorraine Frias at 602.914.4322.