Many people are surprised to learn that Kansas has 13 named
zoos, as well as other animal parks. Kansas zoos range from small operations
like the Cedar Cove Feline Conservatory & Sanctuary in Louisburg to
one of the country's largest - the Sedgwick County Zoo in Wichita, Kansas.
Zoos of Kansas
Kansas zoos and refuges still to be reviewed: Operation Wildlife
(Linwood). Please let me know if there are other animal parks or zoos that
I have missed or if you hear of changes at the zoos or parks already visited..
|Caney, Kansas - The Safari
Zoological Park is a private zoo, just east of Caney, Kansas, near
the Oklahoma state line. Their hours can be a bit irregular and the zoo
may not open during poor weather, so be sure to call and confirm before
visiting. The small zoo has primates, large cats of several species, bears,
wolves, foxes, and tropical birds. A guide takes you though the park on
a one hour tour.
Safari Zoological Park, Tyro Cutoff Road, Caney, Kansas
67333 (620) 515-2885
|Clay Center, Kansas - The tiny Clay
Center Zoo is free and open 9 AM - 8 PM, 7 days a week. The Clay
Center Zoo is run by the Clay Center Utility Company. It is part of a park
across from the power plant. Some of the cages are very small and barren.
Clay Center Zoo, 4th Street and Pomeroy, Clay Center,
Kansas 67432 (785) 632-2171
|Dodge City, Kansas - Wright
Park Zoo in Dodge City is one of the smallest zoos in Kansas. Portions
of the zoo are old, but there is more room and better facilities for the
animals than many WPA zoos.
Wright Park Zoo, 130 4th Avenue, Dodge City, Kansas 67801
|Emporia, Kansas - The David
Traylor Zoo is a small zoo, but far from the smallest in Kansas.
One of the biggest events in 2014, was the arrival of an orphaned male
cougar cub from the state of Washington.
This free zoo is open 10 AM - 4:30 PM, 7 days a week.
David Traylor Zoo, 75 Soden Road, Emporia, Kansas 66801
|Garden City, Kansas - With 300 animals of 100
species, the Lee Richardson Zoo is larger than most zoos in Kansas.
The layout is not very easy to follow and many of the animals are hard
Admission is free if you walk in, but there is a charge
of $10/car if you drive in. The zoo is open 8 AM - 5 PM in winter and 8
AM - 7 PM from April - Labor Day. The Lee Richardson Zoo is closed on Thanksgiving,
Christmas and New Year's Day.
Lee Richardson Zoo, 312 Finnup Drive, Garden City, Kansas
67846 (620) 276-1250
|Garden Plain, Kansas - Eagle
Valley Raptor Center was started in 2003 to promote conservation
of birds of prey through public education, and provide shelter and care
to injured & orphaned raptors. The Center and living quarters occupy
10 acres and there are an additional 10 acres of tall grass prairie with
a nature trail & small wetlands area.
Admission to the center is by appointment for individuals
or groups. A $5 donation is suggested and includes a guided, personalized
Eagle Valley Raptor Center, 927 North 343rd Street West,
Cheney, Kansas 67025 (316) 542-9981
|Goddard, Kansas - The Tanganyika
Wildlife Park opened to the public as a zoo, in June of 2008. Tanganyika
is a non-profit breeding facility for rare and endangered species. Species
represented in the park include giraffes, tigers, snow leopards, and zebras.
Tanganyika Wildlife Park distinguishes itself from other Kansas zoos by
emphasizing interaction between visitors and the animals, There are many
opportunities to feed or pet wildlife as diverse as lemurs, camels, birds
and snakes. Closed for the winter, open April through October.
Tanganyika Wildlife Park, South Hawkins Lane, Goddard,
Kansas 67052 (316) 794-8954
|Great Bend, Kansas - The Brit
Spaugh Zoo has two parts. The main part appears to be much older
and includes many small, out of date cages. The second part is north of
the main area about 60 yards away. The North American Exhibit has larger
pens and most of the zoo's larger animals. Much of this portion of the
zoo can be viewed from the outside even when the zoo is closed. Several
new exhibits are under construction,
Brit Spaugh Zoo, 2200 Main Street, Great Bend, Kansas
67530 (620) 793-4226
|Hutchinson, Kansas - The Hutchinson
Zoo has only about 160 animals and doesn't take very long to visit.
It says a lot about the pride of the community, that Hutchinson maintains
this zoo, when the spectacular Sedgwick County Zoo is only 40 miles away.
Open limited hours, seven days a week. Free Admission.
Hutchinson Zoo, 1500 S Plum Street, Hutchinson, KS (620)
|Independence, Kansas - The Ralph Mitchell Zoo
is one of Kansas' oldest zoos. Older features include a monkey island built
as a 1930's WPA project, and "Kiddy Land." Although the surrounding Riverside
Park seems to be doing well the Ralph Mitchell Zoo has declined from its
Open 7 days a week. Free.
Ralph Mitchell Zoo, Riverside Park Independence, Kansas
67301 (620) 332-2513
|Junction City, Kansas - Milford
Nature Center is located below the dam impounding the 16,200 acre
Milford Reservoir. The nature center provides many things for visitors
including live animal exhibits (fish, birds, animals, reptiles & amphibians),
taxidermy specimens of same, nature trails, a butterfly house (open from
late May through early October), playground, and a picnic shelter. The
nature center sits next to a Milford Fish Hatchery .
Milford Nature Center, 3415 Hatchery Drive, Junction City,
Kansas 66441 (785) 238-5323
|Lawrence, Kansas - The Prairie
Park Nature Center displays more species than several of the attractions
that call themselves zoos. The display hall has a surprising large selection
of plants, birds, insects, reptiles, amphibians, fish and small mammals.
The live species on display are supplemented by dioramas
with stuffed animals, and also by wild birds and mammals which come up
to the nature center's windows.
Parry Park Nature Center, 2730 SW Harper, Lawrence, Kansas
66046 (785) 832-7980
|Louisburg, Kansas - Cedar
Cove Feline Conservatory & Sanctuary isn't a park, but a preserve
for tigers and a refuge for big cats of other species which are abandoned,
neglected or whose owners are unable to care for them. Cedar Cove is open
to the public on Weekends only. Each visitor or group of visitors have
a personally guided tour.
Cedar Cove Feline Sanctuary, 3783 Highway K68, Louisburg,
Kansas 66053 (913) 837-5515
|Manhattan, Kansas - The Sunset
Zoo is one of the most popular zoos in Kansas. Most displays are
modern & roomy, and the animals all appear healthy. This zoo is fun.
Open 360 days a year.
Sunset Zoo, 2333 Oak Street, Manhattan, Kansas 66502 (785)
|Manhattan, Kansas - The Insect
Zoo at Kansas State University includes displays of preserved,
live and fossil insects. Several of the displays are hands on, including
the use of microscopes to view preserved insects, and a creative kitchen
display where each cupboard or drawer had examples and details about the
creatures that may be found there.
Insect Zoo & KSU Display Gardens, Kansas State University,
Manhattan, Kansas 66506
|Nickerson, Kansas - The
Hedrick's Exotic Animal Farm Bed and Breakfast Inn in Nickerson
is open for both overnight guests and tours. Tours include seeing 30 varieties
of exotic animals and feeding and/or petting cattle, camels, ostriches,
rheas, zebras, antelope, kangaroos, and giant tortoises. The tour concludes
with a pony ride (for those under 85 pounds) and camel rides for all.
Open year around, with tours by appointment only.
Hedrick's Exotic Animal Farm, Bed and Breakfast, 7910
North Roy L. Smith Road, Nickerson, Kansas 67561 (620) 422-3245
|Overland Park, Kansas - The 12 acre Deanna
Rose Children's Farmstead has farm animals, birds of prey, gardens,
nature trail, a one room country schoolhouse, fishing pond, Kanza Indian
encampment, horse drawn wagon rides, and pony rides. This petting zoo has
become more of an agricultural theme park.
Open 7 days a week April - October. Free only on Monday
Deanna Rose Children's Farmstead, 13800 Switzer, Overland
Park, Kansas (913) 897-2360
|Pittsburg, Kansas - Nature
Reach is an outreach program of Pittsburg State University's Biology
Department. Nature Reach offers interactive small group programs both on
the Pittsburg State campus and in schools. The campus location has a collection
of wild animals which exceeds the size of most nature centers. Nature Reach
also has a Natural History Reserve which is located several miles southwest
of Pittsburg. There are 79 acres of partially reclaimed mine land and the
Natural History Reserve Laboratory & Raptor Care Facility with its
owls, hawks, vulture and crow.
Nature Reach, 328 Heckert-Wells Hall, Pittsburg State
University, 1701 South Broadway, Pittsburg, Kansas 66762
|Pratt, Kansas - The Pratt
Education Center, Aquariums and Fish Hatchery are operated by the
Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks. Displays, dioramas, and exhibits
display both living and preserved native birds, fish, mammals, and reptiles
of Kansas. The Aquarium Room contains twelve 400-600 gallon aquariums displaying
fish species that are native to Kansas or that have been successfully introduced
into Kansas. Other rooms include live snakes and prairie dogs.
Wildlife Education Center and Aquariums, 512 SE 25th Street,
Pratt, Kansas 67124 (620) 672-5911
|Salina, Kansas - The Zoo
at Rolling Hills Wildlife Adventure is on 60 acres, adjacent to
the Rolling Hills Ranch and the Museum. The animals are in spacious enclosures
and appear to be in excellent health. If you visit on 2 or 3 zoos in Kansas,
Rolling Hills should be one of them.
Closed Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and New Year's Day.
Wildlife Education Center and Aquariums, 512 SE 25th Street
Pratt, Kansas 67124 (620) 672-5911
|Salina, Kansas - The largest free standing aquarium
in Kansas is the Kansas Fishes Exhibit at the Central Mall in Salina.
The 15,000 gallon aquarium is home to 50 - 100 turtles and native fish,
including channel catfish, blue gill, crappie, wipers, largemouth bass,
white bass, and walleye.
Free - open during regular mall hours. The fish are fed
daily at 4 PM.
Central Mall, 2259 South 9th Street, Salina, Kansas 67401
|Topeka, Kansas - The best known feature of the
Zoo is the tropical rain forest which was impressive when it was
built in 1974. The most recent exhibits include Schendel Bug Zoo, which
opened in 2013 and Camp Cowabunga which opened in 2018. The medium sized
zoo is well laid out, and the animals are in large attractive enclosures.
Topeka Zoo, 635 Gage Boulevard, Topeka, Kansas 66606 (785)
|Wichita, Kansas - The small Kansas Wildlife
Exhibit in Wichita's Central Riverside Park opened in 1988, but there
has been a zoo here in one form or another since 1901. There are 8 cages
with over 20 species of birds and turtles, mostly birds of prey that are
also used in education programs. The cages are old and fairly heavy, making
it hard to see and photograph the wildlife. There is a lovely adjacent
pond. Admission is free and it is open from dawn to dusk.
Kansas Wildlife Exhibit, Central Riverside Park, Wichita,
Kansas (316) 683-5499.
|Wichita, Kansas - The Sedgwick
County Zoo is the largest zoo in Kansas and one of the largest
zoos in the United States. One of Kansas' largest attractions, the zoo
is home to more than 2,500 animals of nearly 500 different species. One
of the most impressive features is the Downing Gorilla Forest.
The Sedgwick County Zoo is open 364 days a year.
Sedgwick County Zoo, 5555 Zoo Boulevard, Wichita, Kansas
67212 (316) 660-9453
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