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The Zoo

The Zoo

  • Premiered: 
    February 18, 2017
    (Click date to see TV listings for that day)

  • Network: Animal Planet
  • Category: Series
  • Genre: Reality
  • Type: Live Action
  • Concept: 
  • Subject Matter: Animal
  • Tags:

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Plot Synopsis

Filmed over an eight-month period on the Bronx Zoo's 265-acre campus, THE ZOO is a one-hour series that documents the world of more than 6,000 animals and the 500-plus people dedicated to their care and well-being. For this diverse community of people who work at the zoo, this series reveals how their expertise and varied skills come together to provide the highest quality care for the animals and conserve wildlife worldwide. In the premiere episode, Ntondo, a silverback gorilla is diagnosed with glaucoma and staff devise a strategy to keep him comfortable, two keeper-raised Malayan tiger cubs are prepared for their introduction to their exhibit at Tiger Mountain and a zookeeper methodically orchestrates the introduction of two endangered maleo birds to form a pair bond, breed -- and eventually, produce a chick. Other storylines include how the Bronx and Toledo Zoos worked to prevent the extinction of the Kihansi spray toad; the rescue of an orphaned snow leopard cub from a remote region in Pakistan; and the history of the Bronx Zoo's conservation efforts with the American bison.

On Saturday, March 10, 2018 at 9pm ET/PT, Animal Planet premiered "Kangaroo Dave," the Season 2 premiere of THE ZOO. The season opener features: Dave, a kangaroo suffering from chronic arthritis, who tries cryotherapy; a large group of rambunctious gharials, who are trained to patiently wait for their food; and, a tiny pygmy marmoset giving birth to an even tinier baby. Other stories this season include: breeding komodo dragons; keepers training bats, a golden eagle and Indian gharials; the head-starting of hellbenders, a giant salamander found in Eastern North America, for introduction into the wild; and how a keeper deals with retiring after 31 years of caring for Happy, Patty and Maxine, the zoo's three female Asian elephants.

Season 3 of THE ZOO premiered on Sunday, February 10, 2019 from 8-10pm ET/PT on Animal Planet with a new episode a a brand-new one-hour special. This season the unscripted docuseries will feature animals and staff at all five Wildlife Conservation Society parks in New York City -- the Bronx Zoo, Central Park Zoo, Prospect Park Zoo, Queens Zoo and New York Aquarium. More than 50 stories were filmed over eight months as up to three film crews documented the day-to-day activities at the Bronx Zoo and its sister parks. Some of the animals featured in the new season include: a camel, who has a toupee created for him as he heals from a medical procedure; the birth and rearing of a baby mandrill; the rescue of a young peregrine falcon who was injured in downtown Manhattan as it attempted to take its first flight off a skyscraper; and an up-close look at the building and opening of the Ocean Wonders: Sharks! exhibit at the New York Aquarium that includes the moving of a group of large sharks to their new habitat. Other new animals introduced this season include a marmot, Andean bears, a Rodrigues fruit bat pup, warthog, snow monkeys, Nile crocodile, a sloth, and many more.

THE ZOO returned for its fourth season on Saturday, April 4, 2020 from 9-11pm ET/PT, as Animal Planet debuted back-to-back new episodes. In the season opener, "A New Beginning" (9pm), Max the Camel faces new challenges as he ages; The Zoo prepares to give an injured turkey vulture a permanent home, but after healing, there may be a change of plan; Willow the Red Panda gives birth to two baby cubs. Then, in the night's second episode, "The Great Turtle Comeback" (10pm), a charismatic ostrich named Olga works to be reunited with her flock; Buster the squirrel monkey is introduced to the Zoo's troop of feisty females; a functionally extinct species of turtle finds new life; and everyone's favorite warthog is back.
Season 5 of THE ZOO debuted on Saturday, October 9, 2021 from 8-10pm ET/PT on Animal Planet, immediately followed by a one-hour special:

"A New Reality" (8-10pm; season premiere): The zoo's medical team must perform critical surgery on a bison calf born with a bowed leg; three lynx kittens are ready to explore their exhibit; the first known U.S. case of COVID-19 in animals is confirmed when a Malayan tiger tests positive.

"Rescue Stories" (10-11pm; special): The zoo comes to the aid of an injured turkey vulture found on private property; a sea lion rules the pool when it can no longer live in the wild; a pet wallaby finds a forever home at the zoo; hundreds of snakes are saved from a residence.

Production & Distribution

  • Produced by Left/Right Productions
  • Produced by Copper Pot Pictures


  • Bronx Zoo - Bronx, New York USA