Join our zoo community

Zoos "competing" with each other

Discussion in 'General Zoo Discussion' started by elefante, 28 Sep 2014.

  1. elefante

    elefante Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    12 Aug 2009
    Posts:
    1,321
    Location:
    North Dakota, USA
    Just out of curiosity, do neighboring zoos in large cities compete with each other? It seems to me that even in cities (or metro areas) with more than one zoo, you might see similar collections. For example, Denver and Cheyenne Mountain both have some of the same charismatic species. Is the rest of their collection different enough that the two zoos don't compete? What about Lincoln Park and Brookfield? Are they far enough apart that people usually just choose to visit one or the other or do they have some of the same charismatic species but then have some different species they specialize in? Sorry I couldn't think of another way to explain this.

    Also, have there been cases in cities with more than one zoo where one actually put another one "out of business"?
     
  2. DavidBrown

    DavidBrown Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    12 Aug 2008
    Posts:
    3,808
    Location:
    California, USA
    In California zoos in geographic proximity seem not to compete and do cooperate to some degree. The Oakland and SF Zoos have complimentary collections in that the former has elephants and SF has gorillas, hippos, and rhinos. The SF Zoo director gave an interview where she said that these zoos coordinate their collections and conservation work to some degree.

    LA and San Diego are relatively close together and work together on conservation breeding programs and moving animals between collection. LA realizes that it is more of a regional zoo than the tourism power house that San Diego is. Many people in LA belong to both zoological societies.
     
  3. vogelcommando

    vogelcommando Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    10 Dec 2012
    Posts:
    12,051
    Location:
    fijnaart, the netherlands
    Another example of zoos first competing eachother and later start to co-operate are the 2 Berlin-collections. During the time of the Iron Curtain both zoos wanted to be the biggest , best and famous collections. After the fall of the Iron Curtain they became the same director and now are co-operating.
     
  4. Pleistohorse

    Pleistohorse Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    30 Jan 2013
    Posts:
    478
    Location:
    Alaska
    I remember visiting the Frankfurt Zoo in the early 1990's and seeing signs there referencing Berlin that stated the slogan "Ein Stadt, Zwei Zoos". Obviously I don't speak or write German, but I guess with reunification the some maybe blanched at the idea of maintaining two large zoos in one city...and this was public awareness campaign designed to preserve both....or perhaps just a zoological celebration of Germany's new birth.
     
  5. elefante

    elefante Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    12 Aug 2009
    Posts:
    1,321
    Location:
    North Dakota, USA

    I've always wondered how the San Diego Zoo and San Diego Safari Park have managed to coexist like they have. They have a lot of the same species in their collections don't they?
     
  6. jbnbsn99

    jbnbsn99 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    3 Feb 2009
    Posts:
    6,254
    Location:
    Texas
    The collections between the two are very different.
     
  7. cloudedleopard

    cloudedleopard Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    13 Jul 2014
    Posts:
    551
    Location:
    Land of Liberty
    Brookfield and Lincoln Park have similar collections (pygmy hippos, gorillas, African animals) but only Brookfield has the Swamp and Australia House, and only Lincoln Park has the Pritzker Children's Zoo and Farm-in-the-Zoo.

    These are the only zoos close to each other I've visited except for:
    Orange County and Santa Ana Zoo. Orange County has more native animals; Santa Ana has more primates. If you like crappy exhibits, go to Santa Ana.
     
  8. elefante

    elefante Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    12 Aug 2009
    Posts:
    1,321
    Location:
    North Dakota, USA
    I thought they both had the same charismatic species. Does the zoo have more smaller animals and the safari park more ungulates? I haven't visited either but was under the impression there was quite a bit of overlap in species, so to speak.
     
  9. Shellheart

    Shellheart Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    19 Mar 2013
    Posts:
    282
    Location:
    San Diego,CA
    There is a very slight overlap with some species, but for the most part the Safari Park focuses on animals from Africa, Asia,and a little from North America, while the Zoo maintains a large collection without any specific focus. The Zoo and Safari Park are intended to complement each other, like the Zoo has (mostly) Asian elephants,the Safari Park maintains a herd of African Elephants. For the most part though,the zoo seems to have more of the popular animals that everyone is familiar with,like pandas and polar bears,but they are both great facilities. Off of the top of my head, the only species that both the Zoo and Safari Park maintain would be gerenuk,okapi, African elephants (I believe the zoo only has 2, and the Safari Park would be the place to go to see young elephants), gorillas, secretary birds, lions, cheetahs (the zoo's exhibit is pretty awful though), and greater one-horned rhinoceros,and perhaps a few bird species. If you're looking for variety,the Zoo is probably the place to go,if you're looking for large semi-natural field enclosures, then I'd recommend the Safari Park.
     
  10. Batto

    Batto Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    3 Sep 2013
    Posts:
    1,153
    Location:
    Baltic Sea
    The original Hamburg Zoo and Hagenbecks Tierpark.

    As for competition: the Ruhr area zoos, Hannover/Hamburg, Leipzig Zoo and Berlin...
     
  11. Arizona Docent

    Arizona Docent Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    10 Feb 2009
    Posts:
    5,649
    Location:
    Arizona, USA
    My city of Tucson, Arizona has what I believe is the ideal situation in this regards. Reid Park Zoo focuses on exotic wildlife (outside North America) and the Arizona Sonora Desert Museum focuses on native wildlife (Sonoran Desert of North America). Two completely different experiences and justification for people to see both. (Though in reality the Desert Museum draws largely tourists and the zoo draws mostly locals).

    I have often wondered how a situation like Chicago or Minneapolis/St Paul can exist. I have not been, but my instinct is with Brookfield there is no compelling reason for Lincoln Park to exist and with Minnesota Zoo there is no compelling reason for Como Park Zoo to exist.

    Of course as a zoo lover I say the more the merrier, but I just find it interesting that the zoos that seem to be inferior (Lincoln and Como) can survive alongside their bigger neighbors. Maybe people go because the smaller ones are cheaper (Lincoln even being free)?
     
  12. elefante

    elefante Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    12 Aug 2009
    Posts:
    1,321
    Location:
    North Dakota, USA
    I think Como Park has more charismatic species like gorillas whereas the Minnesota Zoo seems to focus more on cold weather species, someone correct me if I'm wrong. I can't speak for Lincoln Park or Brookfield. How does New York support three zoos? Are they vastly different?

    The combo I've always that was interesting in a metro area was Denver, Colorado Springs, and Pueblo. I think there is a fair amount of overlap with Denver and Cheyenne Mountain's collections. Not sure about Pueblo.
     
  13. Pleistohorse

    Pleistohorse Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    30 Jan 2013
    Posts:
    478
    Location:
    Alaska
    NYC supports four. Five if you include Staten Island. Six if you include the Aquarium.
     
  14. DavidBrown

    DavidBrown Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    12 Aug 2008
    Posts:
    3,808
    Location:
    California, USA
    All of these NYC zoos (minus Staten Island) are run as part of the same organization, the Wildlife Conservation Society, and all of them have different themes and collection plans.

    Similarly the San Diego Zoo and San Diego Safari Park are two campuses of the same organization.
     
    Last edited: 29 Sep 2014
  15. Ituri

    Ituri Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    5 Dec 2007
    Posts:
    3,095
    Location:
    Phoenix
    WCS runs Bronx, Central Park, Queens, Prospect Park, and the New York Aquarium.
     
  16. snowleopard

    snowleopard Well-Known Member Premium Member

    Joined:
    1 Dec 2007
    Posts:
    15,127
    Location:
    Abbotsford, B.C., Canada
    Being free is a huge factor, as Lincoln Park Zoo receives over 3 million annual visitors and Como Park Zoo has over 2 million each year. Also, Como Park has gorillas, orangutans, lions, polar bears, sea lions, giraffes and zebras (all enormously popular zoo animals) and none of those creatures are to be found at Minnesota Zoo. Being free, containing a small amusement park and having lots of megafauna makes Como Park a very desirable destination for families.
     
  17. JVM

    JVM Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    1 Nov 2013
    Posts:
    263
    Location:
    Chicago, USA
    Lincoln Park Zoo and Brookfield Zoo were rivals for many, many years, and directors Marlin Perkins and either Edward or Robert Bean had a strong and very personal distaste of each other. I don't know when the attitude changed but I know by the eighties, LPZ director Lester E. Fisher was a good friend of George B. Rabb of Brookfield Zoo and they often had breakfast or lunch together. They trade animals amongst each other

    Lincoln Park is free, small and more conveniently located in the city. It takes a much shorter time to stroll through and see most key species, and it's right on Lake Shore Drive by locations like the Museum Campus. And again, it's free - people who aren't even very interested in animals will stroll in to enjoy the grounds much like a public park. It's also much easier for busy city parents to bring their kids there. They also have more big cats (in worse enclosures...) and much more intimate primate habitats.

    Brookfield is not truly in Chicago as far as locals are concerned and I know both locations are in opposite directions from my home. It charges an entry fee and is much roomier and a significantly bigger walk. You can't see everything in a day either, which might detract from some casual zoogoers. There is not as much to do in the area surrounding the park even though you can spend a whole day in there. They have had a number of unique species though such as Okapi, Grizzly Bears, tapirs, orangutans, and sea lions, none of which LPZ currently has.

    As a zoogoer, I prefer Brookfield in most cases and have a membership there, but I think for the downtown parent who wants to shut their kids up for a day, LPZ is a better value. It's free, feels closer to home, and you can breeze through it if you want to. I believe Lincoln Park has a third higher attendence as well, probably owing to it's location and price tag.
     
  18. elefante

    elefante Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    12 Aug 2009
    Posts:
    1,321
    Location:
    North Dakota, USA
    Thanks for the detailed information on the two Chicago zoos. Your mentioning that locals may not consider Brookfield to be a "Chicago" zoo is interesting. Maybe the same school of thought exists with the Denver and Cheyenne Mountain Zoo. Denver residents don't feel like going to Cheyenne Mountain as that one is not local to them.
     
  19. JVM

    JVM Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    1 Nov 2013
    Posts:
    263
    Location:
    Chicago, USA
    No problem. The question always puzzled me myself as a kid living between the two. Let the Lions Roar: The Evolution of Brookfield Zoo was very informative. The main reason I knew of Brookfield myself is father used to live in Brookfield and lived close by at the time - most other residents I've spoken to about zoos seem very passively-aware of it compared to Lincoln Park. It's a very interesting situation.
     
  20. elefante

    elefante Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    12 Aug 2009
    Posts:
    1,321
    Location:
    North Dakota, USA
    We took a family trip to Chicago when I was 12 and had one day to go to a zoo. My cousin suggested Brookfield even though Lincoln Park was closer. I guess she preferred Brookfield even though Lincoln Park would have been more local to her. Interesting differences of opinion.