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TOP 25 ZOOS IN THE UNITED STATES


The United States is blessed with hundreds of zoos. To help you make the best of your travel time, we have put together a highly-opinionated list of what we believe to be the top 25 zoos in the United States. It is not an easy task to pick 25 zoos out of a pool of hundreds, so this web-page will forever be a work-in-progress as we travel & visit more zoos across the USA.

This top 25 zoos list is sorted alphabetically by state (and not by quality or rank). The number of animals listed is accurate as of December 2015.

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# STATE ZOO NAME HOW MANY ANIMALS? (as of December 2015) TOWN / CITY
1 California San Diego Zoo more than 3,700 animals from 650 different species  San Diego
2 California San Diego Zoo Safari Park more than 3,500 animals from 260 different species Escondido
3 Colorado Denver Zoo more than 4,200 animals from 750 different species Denver
4 Florida Disney's Animal Kingdom more than 1,700 animals from 250 different species Orlando
5 Florida Jacksonville Zoo & Gardens more than 2,000 animals from 250 different species Jacksonville
6 Florida Zoo Miami  more than 3,000 animals from 500 different species Miami
7 Illinois Lincoln Park Zoo more than 1,100 animals from 200 different species Chicago
8 Indiana Fort Wayne Children's Zoo more than 1,700 animals from 200 different species Fort Wayne
9 Kansas Sedgwick Country Zoo more than 3,000 animals from 400 different species Wichita
10 Michigan Detroit Zoo more than 2,800 animals from 300 different species  Royal Oak
11 Minnesota Minnesota Zoo more than 2,300 animals from 400 different species Apple Valley
12 Missouri St. Louis Zoo more than 18,700 animals from 560 different species St. Louis
13 Nebraska Henry Doorly Zoo more than 17,000 animals from 950 different species Omaha
14 New York Bronx Zoo more than 4,000 animals from 600 different species  Bronx
15 Ohio Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden more than 1,900 animals from 500 different species Cincinnati
16 Ohio Cleveland Metroparks Zoo more than 3,000 animals from 600 different species Cleveland
17 Ohio Columbus Zoo & Aquarium more than 9,000 animals from 700 different species  Powell
18 Ohio Toledo Zoo more than 9,000 animals from 800 different species  Toledo
19 South Carolina Riverbanks Zoo and Botanical Garden more than 2,000 animals from 350 different species Columbia
20 Tennessee Memphis Zoo more than 3,500 animals from 500 different species Memphis
21 Texas Fort Worth Zoo more than 7,000 animals from 500 different species Fort Worth
22 Texas Houston Zoo more than 6,000 animals from 900 different species  Houston
23 Texas San Antonio Zoo more than 9,000 animals from 750 different species  San Antonio
24 Washington, D.C. National Zoological Park more than 1,800 animals from 300 different species  Washington, D.C.
25 Wisconsin Milwaukee County Zoo more than 3,122 animals from 377 different species Milwaukee

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Flamingos at the San Diego Zoo, San Diego, California

RUNNER-UPS: ZOOS ALMOST GOOD ENOUGH TO MAKE THE TOP 25 LIST

Here are a list of other outstanding zoos in the United States that we considered for the top 25 list above. Let us know if you think there are any other zoos of this quality that we should be considering, either for this "runners-up" list or for the above top 25 list itself (email = gparsons66 @ hotmail.com).

STATE ZOO NAME HOW MANY ANIMALS? (as of December 2015) TOWN / CITY
Arizona Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum 300 different species (# of animals unknown) Tucson
Arizona Bearizona Wildlife Park unknown / not listed Williams
Arizona Phoenix Zoo more than 1,500 animals from 325 different species Phoenix
California Living Desert Zoo & Gardens more than 660 animals from 157 different species Palm Desert
California Santa Barbara Zoo more than 600 animals from 180 different species  Santa Barbara
Colorado Cheyenne Mountain Zoo more than 800 animals from 200 different species Colorado Springs
Florida Brevard Zoo more than 550 animals from 170 different species Melbourne
Florida Gatorland unknown / not listed Orlando
Florida Lion Country Safari more than 1,200 animals from 125 different species Loxahatchee
Florida St. Augustine Alligator Farm Zoological Park unknown / not listed St. Augustine
Florida Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo more than 1,200 animals from 180 different species Tampa
Florida Zoological Wildlife Foundation 150 different species (# of animals unknown) Miami
Georgia Zoo Atlanta more than 1,400 animals from 200 different species Atlanta
Illinois Brookfield Zoo more than 2,500 animals from 425 different species  Brookfield
Indiana Indianapolis Zoo more than 2,200 animals from 250 different species Indianapolis
Kentucky Louisville Zoo more than 1,500 animals from 300 different species  Louisville
Louisiana Audubon Zoo more than 1,500 animals from 350 different species  New Orleans
Minnesota Como Park Zoo & Conservatory more than 1,300 animals from 125 different species St. Paul
Missouri Kansas City Zoo more than 1,000 animals (# of species unknown) Kansas City
Montana Grizzly and Wolf Discovery Center unknown / not listed West Yellowstone
New Jersey Cape May County Park & Zoo more than 550 animals from 250 different species Cape May
New Jersey Six Flags Great Adventure & Wild Safari more than 1,200 animals (# of species unknown) Jackson
North Carolina North Carolina Zoo more than 1,600 animals from 225 different species  Asheboro
Oklahoma Oklahoma City Zoo more than 1,900 animals from 500 different species  Oklahoma City
Oregon Oregon Zoo more than 2,000 animals from 240 different species  Portland
Pennsylvania Philadelphia Zoo more than 1,500 animals from 350 different species  Philadelphia
Pennsylvania Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium more than 4,000 animals from 475 different species Pittsburg
Rhode Island Roger Williams Park Zoo more than 950 animals from 100 different species Providence
South Carolina T.I.G.E.R.S. Preservation Station unknown / not listed Myrtle Beach
South Dakota Bear Country U.S.A.  unknown / not listed Rapid City
South Dakota Reptile Gardens more than 950 animals from 225 different species Rapid City
Tennessee Nashville Zoo more than 2,500 animals from 350 different species  Nashville
Texas Dallas Zoo more than 2,000 animals from 400 different species Dallas
Texas Moody Gardens more than 5,500 animals from 650 different species Galveston
Virginia Metro Richmond Zoo more than 2,000 animals from 180 different species Moseley
Virginia Virginia Safari Park more than 1,000 animals (# of species unknown) Natural Bridge
Washington Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium more than 775 animals from 95 different species Tacoma
Washington Woodland Park Zoo more than 1,100 animals from 300 different species Seattle
Wisconsin Henry Vilas Zoo more than 800 animals from 200 different species  Madison





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