The Cape May County Park & Zoo is over 200 acres of excitement and adventure for the entire family. Besides viewing over 550 inhabitants representing 250 species of both exotic and native animals, the zoo offers winding trails for hikers, bikers, joggers and wildlife watchers, multiple picnic areas, a huge playground and more. The perfect alternative to a day at the beach, the zoo has become a favorite destination and a top attraction among visitors, locals and school children. Last year in 2015, the Cape May County Zoo was recognized as the 5th best zoo in the U.S. and the 13th best zoo in the world by TripAdvisor. In the same year, it saw 600,000 visitors come through its gates, and 2016 promises to be another record year thanks to many new exhibits and attractions.
The brand new, state-of-the-art Walter Trettin Memorial Snow Leopard Habitat invites visitors to stop by and say hello to Bataar, an 8-year-old male from the Bronx Zoo, and Tysa, a 3-year-old female from Taganayaka Wildlife Park in Wichita, Kan. Although you won’t find the two in the exhibit together just yet, each animal gets rotated daily into the outdoor habitat. The purpose of this exhibit is to help conserve the species and prevent their extinction under the SSP (Species Survival Plan). Eventually Bataar and Tysa will be formally mixed closer to breeding season after a long introductory stage. Hopefully the two will follow in the footsteps of Himani and Vijay, one of the most successful Snow Leopard breeding pairs in the United States, producing seven cubs over a span of four years and gaining national attention for the Cape May County Zoo.
The Cape May County Park & Zoo just took adventure to a whole new level with a new six-acre aerial park offering more than 100 tree-top obstacle adventures. The Tree to Tree Adventure Park features zip lines, climbing nets, Tarzan swings and other fun obstacles for those ages 7 and older of every athletic ability. With two courses for kids and four courses for adults, thrill seekers should be prepared to challenge both the body and mind! Although climbing throughout the zoo’s trees sounds a bit intimidating, staff members are there to make sure you are safe throughout your entire adventure. A brief instruction before entering the course teaches you how to navigate its elements, and ground patrol staff are stationed throughout the course to provide verbal instruction when needed. Visit www.TreeToTreeCapeMay.com for more information.
View our video below to experience these new attractions firsthand!
In addition to the new snow leopard exhibit and adventure park, visitors can expect to see some new little and not-so-little faces, as the zoo welcomed nine new members into its family this past winter. Two African lions, male and female siblings Lex and Belle, arrived from Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson, N.J. in November 2015 and recently celebrated their 4th birthday. The two kicked off the start of the expanded growth at the zoo. In December 2015, an 8-year-old female Amur Leopard, Judda, arrived shortly after Lex and Belle, and just in time for the completion of the new habitat. Also in December, adult giraffes and zoo favorites Joanie and Sterling gave birth to a female calf, who is now out and about in the African Savanna area. A third new arrival in December was Marty, an 8-month-old male Dromedary Camel from the Animal Adventure Park in Harpursville, N.Y. About a month later in January 2016, Bongos Marley and Bo gave birth to a male calf, the first born at the zoo since Marley herself was born there in 2009. Marley and Bo are also visible in the African Savanna. In February 2016, three Wallaby joeys emerged from their mothers’ pouches. Shelia, Sydney, Addie and their joeys can be seen in the Wallaby habitat.
Others additions to the zoo include a newly renovated Northern American River Otters habitat, an expansion of Tamarin Row which houses Golden Lion Tamarins and Cotton-top Tamarins, and new specials events and educational programs. Future plans for the zoo include a state-of-the-art composting facility, a pond restoration project and an expanded bicycle path.
Visit the Cape May County Park & Zoo every day throughout the year except Christmas, weather permitting. Park hours are 7 a.m. to dusk, summer zoo hours are 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and winter zoo hours are 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The fun is always free at the zoo, but donations are always appreciated!
707 Route 9 N., Cape May Court House
(609) 465-5271, www.cmczoo.com