Adventures with James & Mom
.... featuring New York area weekend trips with James and his
Mom as they search for fun, excitement and learning adventures!
Bronx Zoo Adventure
says: Have you ever heard of an African
wild dog? Me either, but this weekend we went to the Bronx Zoo.
They have a brand new exhibit of African wild dogs. They have a
pack of 19. I learned some very interesting facts from Dakota, an
intern at the zoo, and Margot Mendel, a wildlife conservation volunteer
for 12 years.
how there are only about 2,000 to 3,000 of them are left in the
wild. Mrs. Mendel traveled to Botswana to learn about the animals
and didn't see any roaming free because they are so endangered
in the wild. The
Wildlife Conservation Society is working really hard to help
them in the wild and keep them from extinction.
wild dogs are pretty cool. They look like a calico hyena. The
African wild dog is not like the hyena though. One of the biggest
ways that they are different is that they have a family unit that
cares for its young and its old, most other pack animals eat the
old and weak. The pack has only one female-mom and one male-dad
that have the pups, the rest are brothers, sisters, aunts and
uncles, all taking care of each other. Pretty interesting, huh?
The wild dogs
exhibit is just one of the new things at the zoo. Then there is the
Carousel - instead of a horse, you can ride on a dung beetle
that's rolling poop (or a lady bug if you don't like
the whole sitting-in-poop idea!)
The Butterfly Garden is different, but still very cool. There are new cutouts outside the butterflies to take pictures with, you can be a bee or a fly. The Congo Gorilla Forest is amazing, too. The gorillas are huge and pretty funny.
You never know what they are going to throw.
A view to the Bronx Zoo's
popular Butterfly Garden.
The Children's Zoo is cool. You can climb into a prairie dog burrow and pop your head out to look around, while real prairie dogs run around you. You can climb into a jumbo birds nest, climb up a big spider web, leap like a frog, listen to whispers like a desert fox, then pet and feed animals.
At the Himalayan Highlands you can see the snow leopards. Then there is Tiger Mountain, and the Wild
Asia Monorail for birds' eye views of elephants and rhinos.
There are so many things to see at the Bronx Zoo I can't even remember everything. We kept walking and walking,
Yeah it's a lot of walking, but you just keep seeing more and more animals. You will really have an awesome time here, but I think you should
plan more than one day or you are never going to be able to see and enjoy the whole thing.
What Mom Says : The Bronx Zoo first opened in November 1899, with 22 exhibits and 843 animals. Now it is considered one of the world's greatest zoos. The Bronx Zoo is the crux of the largest network of metropolitan zoos in the country, and the spirit of the Wildlife Conservation Society . There is no other zoo in the world that offers the variety, fantastic viewing, and world-renowned expertise combined with award-winning, progressive exhibits featuring over 4,000 animals. Having said all that, what a great day!
We walked, and walked, and walked and the kids enjoyed every single minute of it. We brought the umbrella stroller and the wagon. We used
Tips - The
Bronx Zoo is located at Fordham Road and the Bronx River Parkway,
Bronx, New York. Contact phone: 718-367-1010. You'll also find Bronx Zoo directions
easy to follow by car, train or bus from their Web site. The Bronx Zoo is open 365
days a year. Monday - Friday 10 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Weekends &
Holidays 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
James watches as a
giraffe lunches on leaves.
$8.00 per car and $16.00 per bus. Entrance fees Thursday - Tuesday
adults $12.00, Children & Seniors $9.00, children under 2
are free, and Wednesday's entrance fee is donation (whatever
you can afford). Special rides & attractions fees are per
person, $2.00 for Bug Carousel, $3.00 for the Children's
Zoo, Congo, Skyfari, Zoo shuttle and Butterfly Garden, $5.00 for
the Monorail and Camel rides. Last entry to special rides &
attractions is 30 minutes prior to Zoo closing.
four parking lots, but I prefer the Bronx Blvd. lot because you
enter the zoo close to the childrens zoo, where the skyfari
and zoo shuttle start. The Asia lot enters the zoo by the World
of Darkness, also the other end of the skyfari and a zoo shuttle
stop. The Bronx River Pkwy is right off the highway so that is
where most tourists park, but it is a bit of a hike to get into
the heart of the zoo, not too bad when you first arrive and are
fresh, but at the end of a long day it feels like quite a trek.
Road lot fills up first. This lot enters the zoo at the fountain
and by the sea lions, a prime entrance spot. This is for early
zoo-goers, if it is full it is a pain in the neck to get back
to the Bronx Blvd lot, so just go ahead to the Bronx River Pkwy
the Zoo with Kids - We went in August and packed a picnic
lunch and lots of water. There are picnic areas as well as concession
stands and cafes and plenty of benches throughout the zoo to sit
awhile and rest or have a snack.
James feeds a friendly llama
at the Bronx Children's Zoo.
Café is air conditioned, good info for hot days. Disposable
straws are not allowed in the zoo, so bring sippy cups or cups
with the hard plastic straws, if the kids are going to need them.
Don't forget to pack the bug spray (don't put it on
until after the butterfly garden) and the hand cleaner. The Zoo
is rather large and it's a good idea to take a look at the
map and plan out your day.
and the monorail can have quite a line during peak seasons and
on Wednesdays. You want to keep that in mind when planning your
day, if you leave the special attractions until the end you won't
fit them all in.
is a fun filled and tiring day. If you live close I suggest you
plan to do it in small sections. If you are going to be there
all day, plan on a light dinner in the car. We packed a cooler
in the car for return trip and the kids were asleep by the time
we arrived home!
should go often and visitors should not miss it. If visiting during the holidays, note that the Bronx Zoo is closed on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day, New Year's Day, and Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.
Save money and avoid the
lines with membership - This is the best deal by far for a large family.
If you live in the New York area, a Wildlife Conservation Society
membership will get you great savings at all of New York's City zoo's
(Bronx, Queen's, Central Park or Prospect Park Zoos) as well as the
New York Aquarium.
authors: James is the oldest of 4 kids. Mom is their Mother,
a children's writer, educator & photographer. They live in
New York with their Dad and pet dogs, cats, geckos, and turtles.