About Austin Zoo

Welcome to Austin Zoo, where every visit promises a one-of-a-kind experience immersed in joy, learning, and meaningful connections with our animal residents. Nestled amidst the scenic beauty of the Hill Country, Austin Zoo stands out as a beacon of compassion and care. Our mission is simple yet profound: to assist animals in need through rescue, conservation, and education. Unlike conventional zoos, each of our animal inhabitants has a unique story to share, reflecting our unwavering dedication to their welfare. As the only Zoological Association of America (ZAA) accredited zoo in the Austin area, we’re deeply committed to serving our community and connecting families with the natural world. Through an array of family-friendly events, animal rescue initiatives, and educational programs tailored for all ages, we strive to foster a sense of wonder and appreciation for the natural world. With over 300 animals representing over 100 different species, Austin Zoo offers endless opportunities for discovery and connection. Over 237,000 individuals visit Austin Zoo annually, including tens of thousands of students and teachers visiting on field trips.

Visit us to be a part of our mission and create memories that will last a lifetime!

Our Mission

The mission of Austin Zoo is to assist animals in need through rescue, conservation, and education.

As a private, non-profit institution Austin Zoo relies on private, corporate, and civic donations, as well as admission fees, gift shop sales, grants, sponsorships and other fundraising events to ensure the health and well being of our animal collection. Support also allows us to take in new animals and participate in conservation efforts to save endangered animals.

Our animal collection includes animals from other facilities that are being retired due to age, health or other issues; animals that were seized in animal cruelty cases; retired laboratory research animals; and individuals’ exotic pets they needed to re-home due to changes in the owner’s lifestyle or the inability to provide appropriate care for these pets.

History of Austin Zoo

Located on the southwest edge of Austin off Highway 290 West and Circle Drive, Austin Zoo is a pleasant Hill Country zoo where visitors from around the world can come to learn about animals close-up, spend some time outdoors getting exercise, and have fun.

Austin Zoo began as a goat ranch. In 1990, the ranch became known as Good Day Ranch, taking in primarily goats, pigs, fallow deer, donkeys and ponies who needed a home. By the year 1994 the ranch had grown and included a number of exotic animals. To reflect all the changes, the Good Day Ranch officially became Austin Zoo. In 1999 the owners decided to donate the animals and the facilities into a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation – a project that was completed in 2000. Austin Zoo has been operated by a Board of Directors since that time.

Austin Zoo relies on private, corporate, and civic donations, as well as admission fees, gift shop sales, grants, sponsorships and other fund raising events to ensure the health and well being of our animal collection. Support also allows us to take in new animals and participate in conservation efforts to save endangered animals.

Our animal collection includes animals from other facilities that are being retired due to age, health or other issues; animals that were seized in animal cruelty cases; retired laboratory research animals; and individuals’ exotic pets they needed to re-home due to changes in the owner’s lifestyle or the inability to provide appropriate care for these pets.

Over 237,000 individuals visit Austin Zoo annually, including tens of thousands of students and teachers visiting on field trips.

Austin Zoo currently occupies approximately 15 acres of land, and owns another 40 acres which will provide ample room for expansion as the Zoo continues to grow.

Support Austin Zoo

Austin Zoo is a non-profit organization, so we continuously rely on public support in order to pursue our mission of assisting animals in need through rescue, conservation and education. We depend on memberships, admission costs and donations to support our work. There are many ways that you or your organization can assist us in helping the animals we take in.

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