The Tail of Us

The Milwaukee County Zoo, above all, promotes an appreciation for all animals and supports conservation of their diverse habitats.

Our Mission

The Milwaukee County Zoo will inspire public understanding, support, and participation in global conservation of animal species and their environment by creating a unifying bond between our visitors and the living earth and provide an environment for personal renewal and enjoyment for our guests by:

  • Contributing to worldwide animal management, conservation, and research efforts
  • Fostering sound physical, psychological, and social development for the animal groups in our care
  • Sharing our knowledge with the intent to reinforce the human-animal-earth bond
  • Improving the quality of our professional development, administration, and operating environment
  • Striving for the financial self-sufficiency of the organization
  • Continuing the public-private partnership with the Zoological Society of Milwaukee

Our Vision

The Milwaukee County Zoo will be a zoo of renown with a reputation as a leader in animal management, conservation, research, and education within a wholesome recreational environment, enjoying the admiration of the citizens of Milwaukee County as well as all zoo guests and other zoos of the world.



Our History

The Milwaukee County Zoo was founded over 130 years ago. That’s almost as old as some Galapagos tortoises!

In 1892, a miniature mammal and bird display in Milwaukee’s Washington Park proved to be a very popular attraction. By the turn of the century, it showcased more than 800 animals on 23 acres of land.

Over the next hundred years, the Milwaukee County Zoo expanded constantly to the 190-acre site home to over 2,100 animals and 314 species we know and love today.

The background on your local Zoo

Be aware of a recent "anniversary" ticket scam. tHE ZOO IS not affiliated with this.